After A Car Accident: There Can Be Many Sources To Recover Your Damages

Many car accident victims don’t make a claim because they think the other driver has no insurance and can’t pay their damages. But after an auto accident there can be sources for paying damages in addition to the other driver. So don’t give up a valuable car accident claim just because you think the other driver is unable to pay your damages. Your lawyer can tell you if others are possibly liable to pay. These can include:

• The other car’s owner. In many states, car owners are liable for the negligence of whoever they let drive their car. In all states, car owners are liable if they let someone drive their car who they know is a bad driver, unlicensed or drunk, and that person causes an accident.

• The other driver’s employer. Employers are responsible for their employees’ accidents while on the job. So if a worker causes a car accident while on duty, the employer is responsible to pay your damages. A recent case is an example.

Linda W. was stopped in traffic when her car was rear-ended by a truck driven by Tim W., who was making a delivery for his employer. Linda was hurt and made a claim against both Tim and his employer. A court ruled for Linda and awarded her damages. Because Tim caused the accident while on the job, his employer was also responsible to pay the award to Linda.

• Your own insurance. Depending on the type of insurance you have, you may be able to collect money from your own insurance company for your injuries and losses.

• Product liability cases. Some car accidents are due to a defect in a vehicle. Victims can make a product liability claim. Several parties can be liable in a product liability claim, including the car’s maker, seller and a supplier who made the defective product.

• “Dram shop” claims. If you are the victim of a drunk driver, you may have a claim against whoever served the alcohol after the person was visibly intoxicated.

• Government claims. If a defect in a road or traffic marking caused the accident, you may have a claim against the government.

Several of these causes may contribute to a car accident, so it’s possible that multiple parties can be liable to pay your damages. Because of this, don’t give up an auto accident claim just because you think a party can’t afford to pay. Instead, call us. We can investigate whether the other driver really can afford to pay and if possibly other parties are also liable.

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