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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 88750
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Hi my name is XXXXX XXXXX I am in need of urgent legal help!

Resolved Question:

Hi my name is XXXXX XXXXX I am in need of urgent legal help! I was in a car accident about over a year ago and I am now getting sued for $20,000. I was the one who caused the accident apparently and I had P.I.P insurance at the time of the accident but the amount I am getting sued for is RIDICULOUS!! The accident was not a big deal. Like I was driving at 10-20 mph and the other car was from 0-5 mpr and the ambulance was rejected was it arrived by the other party. No one was injured. We were all up and walking like nothing and now these people are claiming to have PERMANENT INJURIES and want to sue me for 20 grand!!!! Like W.T.F!!! I was 7 months pregnant at the time and absolutely NOTHING HAPPENED TO ME OR MY UNBORN CHILD!!! SOMEONE PLEASE HELP ME. Thank You
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question Vanessa. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

Did you have liability insurance as required by FL law at the time of the accident (not just PIP)?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Yes sir I did. I just did not have bodily coverage. State Farm (other parties insurance) apparently paid the driver $7,500, his wife $7,500 and his mother $5,000 for permanent injuries that they so called sustained and are billing me for it.

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response.

If you had proper FL liability insurance coverage, your insurer should have covered all of the other damages and is bound to represent you in any lawsuit over the accident. If you have been sued, you need to immediately notify your insurance company for legal representation as they are bound to provide legal representation to you in most all cases.

Thus, start by notifying your own insurance company. If they refuse to represent you, then you are going to need to file an answer to the suit denying all of the allegations in the suit and you are going to have to litigate this matter and prove they could not have sustained the injuries they are claiming based on the slow speed of the accident.

If you cannot get an attorney or legal aid to assist you or cannot get a pro bono attorney at the FL bar to assist you, then you will have to answer this suit yourself and get a copy of the FL rules of civil procedure and evidence to guide you through the court process and you can get those from the local library.

To answer this suit yourself if you cannot find an attorney, you need to copy the heading on the Complaint (court name/case name/case number). Title it "Answer." Then you need to state you are the respondent, your name, and that you are appearing to represent yourself and answering the petition. Then you number every response to correspond with the numbers on the petition. You then answer each one with "Admit" "Deny" or "Insufficient information to find a reasonable belief as to the truth of the matter asserted and leave petitioner to her proof thereof." Once you have answered each numbered paragraph then you can put "Defenses" and list any defenses you have to her petition. Then if you have any counterclaims to make, you can make them after your defenses under the title Counterclaim and to do that you would copy the same layout that the initial petition you received has and just change each numbered paragraph to reflect your facts and allegations.

Once you complete that you sign the response, you have it notarized. Under that put "Certificate of Service" and put the name/address of her attorney where you will be mailing a copy and the date you mail it and sign that.

Then file the original and one copy with the clerk of court and ask the clerk to stamp one copy to give back to you as proof of service. Mail one copy to the other party's attorney.





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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you so much sir! The insurance company that I had at the time has not done anything what so ever to assist me in this matter! Instead they just told me that I have to take care of this. That I did not have bodily coverage there for its my problem basically... I am a single mom and I have two small kids and I cannot afford this ridiculous lawsuit! Not once have they contacted me! I have been the one busting my bottom solving this problem all by myself! I'm pretty positive that I will left alone to fend for myself. Excuse me sir but isn't P.I.P (Personal Injury Protection)??? Shouldn't this accident be covered??? Why are they harassing me directly? These guys are a joke! No way could those guys have PERMANENT INJURIES. IMPOSSIBLE!!! I just know this lawsuit is fishy! Any suggestions sir?


Thank you so much sir by the way!

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response. Under FL law, you are required to have basic liability coverage which includes the $10,000 PIP/Bodily Injury and $10,000 liability. If you had that and this is a claim in excess of that coverage then you would be on your own. However, your insurance is supposed to cover any claims up to your policy limits and you need to consider getting your policy and sitting with a local attorney to read what they are supposed to provide you, because you should have had some coverage by your insurance on the minimum FL policy requirements.

It is a worthwhile expense to sit with a local general litigation attorney to read your policy itself because it sounds like your insurance is ducking their responsibility here.

Of course it sounds like they are blowing their injuries out of proportion as well. You need to file an answer in the suit as well as I stated above if you find that your insurance company under your plan does not have to provide you coverage.

Once you file your answer, you have to serve the other party with a request for production of documents demanding all of their medical records proving their injuries and you are going to need your own medical expert to examine those records, which is why you hiring an attorney would likely be worth your while.

Your only other choice here, if you cannot defend this and cannot get an attorney is to consider filing bankruptcy if you qualify based on your assets and debts, which would put an end to the suit completely based on the bankruptcy.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I will have to unfortunately. I am co-owner of the car along with my father. He to was summoned separately. My dad unfortunately does have the funds to pay this suit but will definitely not. Will they go after him/ his money? My parents own properties and have their well saved savings but it was not their fault. Let alone that they weren't even present when I had the accident.I don't mind filing. Will they go after him?

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the follow up.

I am afraid that they can go after not just the driver of the car but the registered owner as well. Thus, if your father is a registered owner, I am afraid they can go after him as well as you being the driver. Thus, your father will also have to defend on this case as well and if he has properties he must defend to protect those properties I am sorry to say.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Wow!!! Omg!!! I feel like crying. Sir can scan and email you one of the documents as well as my car title? I would like for you to see them and give me your opinions. I'm hoping you catch something that I didn't see. I would appreciate your help.


 


Thank You. Oh by the way Happy Easter. : )

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
I am sorry you are in this situation, but I am afraid that crying is not going to help now. Chances are that you are NOT going to be found to owe $20,000, that is ridiculous in most car accident claims, so you can rest assured that you would have a defense here. However, you still need to defend this in court and show evidence that their injuries were not severe enough to claim this amount of damage.

The problem is that you really do need local representation on this and we cannot guarantee you any privacy if you start posting emails and documents on this service, that is something you must use local counsel to review and is really beyond the scope of the general information service we are allowed to provide.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Sorry to just mention this to you but when I had this accident me and the other vehicle crashed due to us both driving on a restricted area at the same time, which I ended up hitting him on his left side causing MINOR damage to his driver seat door and front left bumper. But I took the cake. I received the ticket. How can I fight this? I am the one paying the price but it was not all my fault. We would of never crashed if it wasn't for US BOTH driving on the restricted area. We both attempted to access the left turning lane at the same time...

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
If both of you were in a restricted area, one of your defenses in your answer would be "contributory negligence" and argue that any award should be reduced by the amount of liability that the other driver had for driving in a restricted area. This is something the court will have to consider and decide as the trier of fact.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 88750
Experience: Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
Law Educator, Esq. and 2 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you sir for your time. You have helped me greatly!!! I will absolutely recommend your services. Smile

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