Car accidents have been a fact of life ever since driving on open roads became popular. While car accidents are a given, it is not always easy to determine who is at fault, especially in an accident involving multiple vehicles. That is because it will give you information you can discuss with a personal injury lawyer in Bellflower, if you are ever involved in a car accident regardless of your fault.
Who is the responsible party in a car accident?
Many personal injury lawyers believe that you are responsible for any monetary damages if you were in a car accident and you were driving. However, this is not always the case if you were not the owner of the car. You could either file or receive claims against or from more than one person in this instance. In California, you are responsible for any monetary damages if your car is involved in an accident involving property damage, bodily damage, or both. This is true even if you were not driving because you gave the driver permission to drive your car, from the standpoint of California’s law.
The damage is limited
If you are the owner of a car which was involved in an accident and you are at fault, you are only liable for damages not exceeding:
● $15,000 per person for bodily injury or death
● $30,000 for the entire accident for bodily injury or death
● $5,000 for property damage claims
However, none of the caps apply if you knowingly let an incompetent or unlicensed driver drive your car. Examples of incompetent drivers include elderly people, drunk drivers, underage drivers, or bad drivers. In this case, you would be liable for bodily and property damage not exceeding the limits of your personal car insurance policy. Your victims would be filing two insurance claims in this instance. You can consult a lawyer for more advice and guidance regarding this.
How to file an insurance claim when the owner did not drive the car
A personal injury lawyer would inform you that the general process of filing an insurance claim is the same regardless of who owned the involved car. However, complications can arise. This is especially true when potential exceptions exist. Your insurance company could then argue that it is not liable to pay for the claim in this instance. You would be responsible for paying the entire amount of the insurance claim out-of-pocket in this instance. Liability is not always clear cut but while liability is generally clear in car accidents, this article demonstrates that this is not always the case.