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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 29818
Experience:  Lawyer. Former judicial law clerk. Worked for District Attorney's Office in Traffic Court.
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I have a question regarding a traffic accident

Customer Question

I have a question regarding a traffic accident
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today.
What is your question? How did the accident occur?
Also, what state are you in?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am in the Bronx, NY
I have an employee who broadsided a vehicle, whom he claims ran a stop sign. He was on a two way street with stop signs both on his corner and the opposite corner. The car that he hit was traveling on a one way street, also with a stop sign on her corner. His claim is that he stopped at the stop sign. Whether or not he saw the other vehicle coming down the street or not, if he did he assumed she would stop at the stop sign, but she didn't . She sped throw one lane of the street he was traveling on, and tried to beat him but didn't. he couldn't stop in time and hit her. Being he hit her on the passenger side, it means that he was on her right, which means that even if they arrived at the stop signs at the same time he would have the right of way. We have no witnesses and the only evidence is his word against hers. but because of the damage seems to be more in favor of her case, because he broadsided her, it would appear that he ran the stop sign, which wasn't the case. What to do?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
You said if he saw her, he would've assumed that she was going to stop. But did he actually see her stop?
Are you worried about insurance, court, a lawsuit, what specifically?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No...she never stopped.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There was a pick up truck driver behind her who not only saw what happened, but also said she passed the stop sign on the block before. The police didn't arrive for three hours so he left the scene. you would think my driver would get the information of his company but he didn't only his personal info, and now three years later, he's nowhere to be found.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
It honestly sounds like they're both at fault, if they got to the stop sign at the same time. She's at fault for not stopping as legally required. But stopping at the line isn't enough. Your employee is required to stop long enough to make sure the way is clear before proceeding through the intersection. If he saw that she didn't stop, and he went anyway, then he's also at fault. The placement of the damage suggests that she was more than halfway through the intersection, which means he should've seen that she wasn't stopping.
Which typically means that your employee has to pay for half the cost of repairing each car, and so would the other driver. You're responsible if he was driving during the course of his employment. To get an order that the other driver has to pay for 100% of the damages, it would be necessary to establish that your employee did stop, did wait, and noticed she wasn't stopping, but couldn't get out of the way fast enough.
The other driver's testimony that she ran the stop sign would help, but it would help more if he saw your employee enter the intersection first, so help avoid a ruling that he was also negligent. But you unfortunately have to track him down first.
If you have any questions or concerns about my response, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What would it mean if he wasn't in my employment at the time?
Also, he was in motion, so he claims, when she can barreling through, so he hit the breaks but not in time. He wasn't traveling very fast (maybe 5mph at time of impact) but she had a small rink dink car and he had a Chevy Tahoo SUV, so her damage was severe, and the dent on the front of the Tahoo is barely noticeable. To make matters worse, she had a passenger so they are claiming injuries. His take on the scene was that they were both laughing after the incident so he doubted the person on the passenger side was really hurt and just looking for a lawsuit.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
If he wasn't working for you at the time, then he's responsible.
It's horrible when people take advantage of others to try to get a big windfall. Your employee is allowed to ask for proof of injuries, and he can cross-examine the other driver and her passenger to try to prove they're lying. Meanwhile, it would really help if there was any way to track down the witness. Maybe social media can help.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is the Bronx. For all we know the pickup driver could be doing jail time. We tried our best to find him.
If he wasn't working for me. wouldn't there be legal implications because it was a company car, even if it was for my personal use and not a delivery vehicle?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Only if you had reason to believe the employee is a bad driver and you let him drive, anyway.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Actually, he had a clean driving record for 25 years. I had reason to believe he was a good driver. That being the case, would it be legally ok to let him use the car if he wasn't an employee? How would that typically sit with the company insurance policy?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Where did you go Lucy?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
I'm sorry, I got called away unexpectedly and your response hadn't appeared yet.
You'll have to talk to your insurance company about whether you're allowed to let people drive company vehicles for non-work purposes. It depends on your policy. But if he's generally a good driver and there's no reason to believe he's going to cause an accident, you're not responsible just because he was driving your car - he is. (Only if he contributed to the accident - it sounds like the other driver is the one who should be paying for everything).