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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 12620
Experience:  Licensed Attorney
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Daugh was in car accident hit by a drunk driver, 2nd

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Daugh was in car accident hit by a drunk driver, 2nd offense, and the other drivers ins is not being very cooperative. They wont pay the storage fees or issue us a rental car since they are "still investigating", accident was 6 days ago. They called the house and talked with my daugh & during the conversation I didnt feel good about what I was hearing from my end so I took the phone and told them all the info they needed was in the police rpt. They now say I was impeding the investigation and it will take longer. They asked me to move the car to a nonfee storage facility, which I didnt want to do but did, and to send them pictures of the car. Isnt that their job? They say the issue is who came to the stop sign 1st, "dual responsibilty" which means to me they want to blame part of it on my daugh. Does it really matter who came to the stop sign 1st since the other driver was in the wrong lane and hit my daugh while drunk? There were no witnesses so how can they determine that? Cops said my daugh was not at fault & had the right away, other driver was arrested. She hurt her neck but will prob be okay, MD called it classic whiplash and gave her a script, will do addl studies if prob doesnt resolve with 2-3wks.

Good day, my name is Brandon. When you talk about "they", are you referring to the other driver's insurance company?

I apologize--I see now that you referred to "the other drivers ins"... by "ins", I can safely assume that you are referring to his insurance company. My apologies, but I do have one final question: in which state did the accident occur?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Davenport IA

Iowa has a "modified comparative negligence rule", which basically says that the negligence of more than one person can contribute to the accident, and if the plaintiff (you) is at least 50% at fault, the other party or your insurance doesn't have to pay damages (unless otherwise agreed in the insurance contract). That said, under the modified comparative negligence rule, if you were 20% responsible for an accident, you could still collect, but you could only collect for 80% of the damages. If the insurance adjuster is asking about who came to the stop sign first, s/he is most likely investigating whether any of the fault can be attributed to your conduct, thereby reducing their liability.

​As for how they can determine that without any witnesses, it's quite possible that they can't, but they won't know unless they investigate.

​As for asking you to take the photos, that is (in my experience) quite odd. To be frank, I might recommend asking to speak with your claims adjuster's supervisor to make sure that your claims adjuster is doing his/her job. Still, if your insurance contract is like most others, you have a duty to reasonably cooperate with their investigation, so if the insurance company wants you to take photos, it's probably a good idea to just do it. Honestly, it's to your advantage to take the photos yourself because you can make sure that the angles, lighting, etc. are most favorable to your case.

​I hope that your daughter recovers quickly. Let me know if further clarification is needed, and please feel free to leave a rating once you are finished. Thanks.

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Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thank you for your reply. The other ins co is coming back saying my daugh, due to the amt of damage on our vehicle vs the amt damage to their client's vehicle, was prob speeding & ran the stop sign and is filing a claim against us. Other person was arrested that night for DWI which doesnt seem to play a role per the other ins co. Anyway, my ins agent states that my ins now has the "big guys" working on it and to not be surprised case doesnt end up going to court at some point.