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I rear-ended someone who slammed on their brakes ahead of me. What are my options?

Los Angeles, CA |

A minor fender bender. I was going approx 7mph with no damage to my vehicle. We exchanged information & then I went on my way. After I left the scene, he stayed back & called the police; 1 of the 4 individuals in the car claimed personal injury after I left. Police took his statement, not mine, then called me for my statement. I've left 6 msgs already for this officer, still waiting. I also found out that I was an excluded driver on the policy covering the vehicle I was driving. I used the vehicle without permission. I have a message from the other driver's insurance co asking for my statement. I'm not sure how to proceed. Should I contact the other driver to see if I can negotiate something or his insurance co and give them a statement? Should I keep quiet and hire an attorney asap?

For clarification, this is not a hit & run situation. Also, when I say that I used the vehicle without permission, it was the vehicle of a member of the household I live in and I was not authorized to use it. The owner does not wish me ill, though I have betrayed their trust. Do I still need to hire a criminal attorney? Or should I find someone who can defend against a personal injury claim?

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Attorney answers 9


Hire an attorney as soon as possible before giving any statements without the advice of an attorney, best of luck.

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Keep your mouth shut, and retain a local criminal lawyer to resolve it.


Hire a lawyer right away. Do not give a statement.


I agree with everyone. Do not make any statements, hire an attorney and the attorney will take care of the matter for you. This case is very fishy. Injuries could show up after a while and not necessarily at the moment but considering your speed and other facts it seems weird.


Hire a lawyer and do not make statements. Best of luck.

This answer is provided by California Accident Attorney Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., 510-206-4492. Abogado de Accidentes de Autos de California: 510-206-4492. Abogado de Lesiones de Accidentes de Autos, provides answers of a general context. These answers are not intended to form an attorney client relationship. Oakland Abogado Accidentes Autos, Abogado de Lesiones Personales, Abogado de Accidentes de carros, Abogado de accidentes de Peatones, practices in Antioch, Berkeley, Concord, Oakland, Hayward, Martinez, Newark, Richmond, San Francisco and San Rafael. El abogado de lesiones y heridos en accidentes de autos, is licensed only in California. This information is good only in California and it is not to be taken as legal advice on car accidents, personal injury, divorce, bankruptcy or in any other type of situation. Esta respuesta es del Abogado de Accidentes de Autos, Abogado de Lesiones Personales, Abogado de Heridos en Accidentes de carros, Manuel A. Juárez, 510-206-4492. Abogado Hispano de Accidentes, Abogado de Divorcios, Abogado Latino de Accidentes, Abogado de Accidentes de Oakland, Hayward, San Francisco, California. Estas respuesta son solo para información general y no consisten en consejo legal sobre divorcios, mantención de esposas, mantención de hijos o bancarrotas. Las respuestas son comentarios legales que no forman una relación de abogado y cliente. Manuel Juarez, Esq., esta licenciado solo en el Estado de California.


You should do nothing but get a lawyer. You sound like you are on the edge of making some big waves for yourself.

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I doubt you need a criminal lawyer - you need a lawyer that can help defend the injury and property damage claims coming in against you and the vehicle owner. If you have your own insurance they should handle this mess for you.


Yes, hire a personal injury attorney to handle this. If you have car insurance yourself for a vehicle you own, they should cover the damages.


"Should I keep quiet and hire an attorney asap?"


Mr. Crosner is licensed to practice law in California and has been practicing law in California since 1978. The response herein is general legal and business analysis.. It is not intended nor construed to be "legal advice" but rather it is analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.

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