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Is it Legal to collect $ from the Owner of Car that hit you?

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  • Is it Legal to collect $ from the Owner of Car that hit you?

    I got into an accident in San Francisco. The lady hit my car. We exchanged info and then when i called her she says she dont have insurance, but will pay from her pocket if i tell her the damage estimate. I didnt file a police report nor did i contact my insurance company. And right now i dont know what to do because i was never in an accident before. Should i go to a auto dealer for damage estimate and then have her pay me? The car is still drivable but i don't know a single thing about law.

  • #2
    You really should have filled a report, at the of the crash. It's probably too late now. If she is genuinely offering to pay, don't take a check.

    Honestly, you are probably screwed because you didn't file a report and she doesn't have insurance.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Serreach View Post
      I got into an accident in San Francisco. The lady hit my car. We exchanged info and then when i called her she says she dont have insurance, but will pay from her pocket if i tell her the damage estimate. I didnt file a police report nor did i contact my insurance company. And right now i dont know what to do because i was never in an accident before. Should i go to a auto dealer for damage estimate and then have her pay me? The car is still drivable but i don't know a single thing about law.
      You are screwed. She probably gave you a fake phone number to contact her. She definitely doesn't have the money to pay you. Think about it for just a minute. If she had hundreds, or thousands of dollars laying around, she probably would have insurance now wouldn't she?

      Consider it a lesson learned. Believe me, I am not taunting you, the very same thing happened to me when I was 16 years old, and I was out of luck.
      What is Perseverance?
      -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
      -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
      -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


      BOP - BPA - ICE

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      • #4
        If she had said that she would pay for minor damage for fear of her insurance rates going up, I'd be more understanding. But in this situation, I have to agree with the above posters. If she can't afford the monthly insurance payment for her vehicle, how can she afford to pay for the damage to your vehicle. If too much time has not passed, I'd try to file the report now. I would also contact your own insurance company regarding the accident (as your policy may say you are required to do).

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        • #5
          Being a good street cop is like coming to work in a wet suit and peeing in your pants. It's a nice warm feeling, but you're the only one who knows anything has happened.

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          • #6
            We're responsible for damage we do with our vehicles. Insurance just makes it easier to meet our obligations. While it may be against the law to drive without insurance, it is not unlawful for an at-fault driver to pay for damages out of pocket. I've seen drivers settle the matter for cash, at the scene.

            By all means contact your insurance agent, this is what you pay him for.

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            • #7
              If you have an under insured clause on your policy, it will help you a lot.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks, Indiana, Kansas and (all the others) for the responses, but since it happened in Kullyfohrnya, let a former (30 year) CA cop handle this one, if you please.

                Under CA law, any traffic collision under $500 (and trust me, as long as both cars were driveable....way beyond $500), where no one is injured and no one's drunk does not require a police report. State law requires that parties do exchange information. When called for such a traffic collision, LAPD tells them, "Sorry, we won't be responding, just exchange information." If one party at the scene refuses to do so without the police being present, we'll get there when we get there, but we usually negotiate the exchange over the phone. Response times to such collisions are lengthy, if not non-existant.

                Serreach, off-duty, I've been on both the "receieving" and the "giving" end of such transactions. When I was the "giver" I always asked that the other party get three estimates, I told them I would pay the middle amount. When I was the reciever, and the other party did not ask, I got at least two when I felt like it.

                So, my advice is to get two estimates, send the other party copies, and see what happens.
                "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Kieth M. View Post
                  Under CA law, any traffic collision under $500 (and trust me, as long as both cars were driveable....way beyond $500), where no one is injured and no one's drunk does not require a police report. State law requires that parties do exchange information. When called for such a traffic collision, LAPD tells them, "Sorry, we won't be responding, just exchange information."
                  Even if one party is uninsured or unlicensed, you won't respond? Truly is a different world in Kalifornia, I guess.

                  Indiana doesn't require a report until damage is at least $1k (which is nothing with the cost of body work these days), but we'll make a report if either party wants one. For a minor PD its better to just exchange info and go on your way, but if one party is unlicensed/uninsured, I'd want a report.
                  I miss you, Dave.
                  http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CruiserClass View Post
                    Even if one party is uninsured or unlicensed, you won't respond? Truly is a different world in Kalifornia, I guess.
                    Chances are, all we're going to to is cite the uninsured driver. Perhaps impound the car of the unlicensed one....that's if we get there and they're still waiting around.
                    "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                    Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                    Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I suspect that LAPD is way too busy with felonies to respond to traffic infractions.
                      Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

                      I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ateamer View Post
                        I suspect that LAPD is way too busy with felonies to respond to traffic infractions.
                        I'm sure they'd like you to believe that.

                        The reality is that we were usually too busy with calls....calls, calls, calls, and more calls. Remember, there, any '9-1-1 hangup' is a code-three run. Any 'unknown trouble' is a code-three run. D/V calls tie patrol units up most often, with mentally-ill persons running second.

                        As for traffic units, they're tied up on A's, B's & K's, hit & splits and DUI T/C's. A traffic unit will rarely be assigned a PDO-only T/C.
                        "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                        Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                        Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by TheKansan View Post
                          You are screwed. She probably gave you a fake phone number to contact her.
                          Did you even read the quote you posted?
                          "Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter. You will meet them doing various things with resolve, but their interest rarely holds because after the other thing ordinary life is as flat as the taste of wine when the taste buds have been burned off your tongue." -Ernest Hemingway

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Kieth M. View Post
                            Thanks, Indiana, Kansas and (all the others) for the responses, but since it happened in Kullyfohrnya, let a former (30 year) CA cop handle this one, if you please.

                            Under CA law, any traffic collision under $500 (and trust me, as long as both cars were driveable....way beyond $500), where no one is injured and no one's drunk does not require a police report. State law requires that parties do exchange information. When called for such a traffic collision, LAPD tells them, "Sorry, we won't be responding, just exchange information." If one party at the scene refuses to do so without the police being present, we'll get there when we get there, but we usually negotiate the exchange over the phone. Response times to such collisions are lengthy, if not non-existant.

                            Serreach, off-duty, I've been on both the "receieving" and the "giving" end of such transactions. When I was the "giver" I always asked that the other party get three estimates, I told them I would pay the middle amount. When I was the reciever, and the other party did not ask, I got at least two when I felt like it.

                            So, my advice is to get two estimates, send the other party copies, and see what happens.
                            I didn't understand this???

                            Sounds honestly like a civil court issue, if she doesn't pay you may can take that route (my buddy won a very similar case). It all depends on the damage, a scratch that is out of the clear will cost around $300 to repair. You just have to weigh the opportunity cost out on your decision if she does not pay.


                            Good luck to you, next time I would have her sign a statement if possible, and make sure you take plenty of pictures before and after if you get it fixed.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              What I'm saying is that we pushed way over the "$500 limit" all the time.

                              And, yes, it is ultimately a civil matter. A Small Claims matter.
                              "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                              Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                              Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

                              Comment

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