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N Cal Atty
N Cal Atty, Attorney
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 9258
Experience:  Since 1983
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NJ no fault liability question. My son and live with my

Customer Question

NJ no fault liability question. My son and live with my parents. All the vehicles used by the family are owned by my mother and father so therefore are the insurance i in their name, I am on their policy as a second driver and there is a car owned by my
father but paid for me because he got the car loan in his name because I could not be approved. Really extraneous but related in that I am aware of the ramifications of the real issue. My son lives here but is not on the family policy as a driver, he was driving,
and while improperly passing another car and minor fender bender occurred. He does not understand the difference between liability, insurance and collision insurance and the legal culpability when an accident occurs on both parts. There was no damage to our
car, but according to my son he "just tapped" the other women car while trying to pass. Which when the police arrived for the accident issued him a ticket for car less driving. Ignorant of the differences between collision and liability he was trying to negotiate
with the women to just part path’s there was no damage to our car, and according to him slight damage to her car. So knowing the ramifications of the fact that the damages however slight they were to his act of improperly passing thus the careless driving
ticket the women had enough foresight and rightfully so to require him to provide the insurance info for our car. Skip over the fact that this wasn't a shake hands and just part paths situation and he was at fault so therefore liable for the damages however
slight. I tried to explain to him no given the nature of the accident, the way to do it and not involve, insurance would have been to offer to pay out of pocket any damages she felt were caused, would have been to give her his contact info, and legally he
was obligated to provide insurance info the fact that there was no damage to our car would not negate and wash out the legal culpability of who would have to pay for her damages clear ours especially exemplified by the fact that he was issued careless driving
ticket which no matter how you cut slice or dice it made him (actually my parents) responsible to pay. Due to his ignorance of the liability aspect but yet made aware by the police officer and the other driver he had to provide her evidence of insurance coverage
and give the other driver the insurance companies info for our car. He did not however get her insurance or contact info or report the accident to our insurance company. If you still reading here is the question am I right on these assumption? Once the other
driver takes reports the accident to her insurance company and provides our insurance information the damages get accessed and her insurance company files the liability claim with our (my parents) insurance company upon determining the fact that my son part
of the household uninsured on his own and not included on the family policy our insurance company will refuse to pay could possibly cancel my parents insurance,, or if not require them to add him to the policy whether he drives any car or not and still not
pay. At that point the other driver’s insurance company can sue my parents personally for damages? Also At this point is there a way to contact her insurance company and offer to pay out of pocket to prevent the liability claim being filed with our insurance
company?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am sorry it is hard to be concise for me I didn't know what to leave out, so given that you have read my original question. What do you think would be the outcome? What is your advise on what action I should take ?
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question.

If you son was not specifically excluded from coverage under the policy, he should be covered as a permissive driver of the vehicle, see

http://caselaw.findlaw.com/nj-supreme-court/1452953.html

where the NJ Supreme COurt stated:

"if a person is given permission to use a motor vehicle in the first instance, any subsequent use short of theft or the like while it remains in his possession, though not within the contemplation of the parties, is a permissive use within the terms of a standard omnibus clause in an automobile liability insurance policy."

You could get a copy of the police accident report or the SR-21 (if the other driver claims the damage was over $500) to get the name and address of the other driver.

You should notify your insurer of the potential claim since many policies let the insurer escape liability if the policy holder does not notify it of an accident. If you cannot make a very quick out of court settlement with the other driver, you have to notify your insurer.

I hope this information is helpful.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You should notify your insurer of the potential claim since many policies let the insurer escape liability if the policy holder does not notify it of an accident." I was told by my insurance agent if another claim was filed the policy would be cancelled find another way to settle matters. What about being threatened not to report an accident claim?
Expert:  N Cal Atty replied 1 year ago.

That would be a valid reason not to report the accident.

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