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  #1  
Old 09-08-2002, 02:42 AM
cossie
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Got into a car accident--need advice

I waited to post this after I had collected my thoughts. It has really depressed me over the past week. The accident happened last week. Here is a simple summary of what happened:

I'm on the freeway in the slow lane going about 5 - 10mph. The car in front (A) of me stops, I (B) stop, but the car behind (C) me rams me pretty hard and pushes me into the car in front of me. My car stalls, C drives to the shoulder, B gets out of his car and comes over to me to ask if I am all right. He drives to the shoulder. I'm in my car for what seems like a long time trying to start my car. A and C are switching insurance info. I decide to bail my car (not a M-B) and get A's and B's insurance info. A, which is a big American SUV with passengers, is unscathed. The occupants are nice and say that there is no damage, as I only tapped on their trailer hitch. They also say they are fine. A leaves after giving their info to me and C and getting my and C's info. C and I are on the shoulder now. My car is still in the freeway lane though. I look at C's car and I do not see an obvious damage to his front. Soon a CHP officer arrives and asks if we want a police report. C doesn't think so, but I want (and need) one. We tell the officer what happened and mention that another car (A) was involved. A few minutes later a tow truck arrives and he asks me to steer my car while he pushes. I get in and try my luck again, amazingly it starts and I drive it to the shoulder. After the police report is written, everyone leaves. I am able to drive my car home.


The damage to my car surprised me. Out of all the three cars, my car sustained the most damage, all in the rear. The transmission is pretty messed up now. The muffler is pushed against something. There is no damage to the front at all. The car is a Volvo 245. I notified my insurance.

Now, I need advice here. It is clearly the fault of the driver behind me (C). My insurance agent told me that his ins. has accepted liability. But I have not been able to speak with his ins. agent assigned to my case. I need to know about car rental, medical expense, and repairs. C's ins. will send an inspector to look at my car next week. My neck and back were stiff and aching after the accident, but I have not seen a doctor yet. I have not rented a car yet. My ins. say my coverage does not cover rental, but can I be reimbursed by C's ins.? His ins. said that if I need a rental, I can get one and they will reimbursed me IF they accept fault after their investigation. I need to speak to C's ins. agent assigned to the case to confirm this. What do I do in the meantime? I do not want to get a lawyer involved because 1.) the other party has accepted fault, 2.) lawyers slow down the process even more, 3.) I do not want to take advantage of the situation. Am I a fool? People have told me to get a lawyer, but I (want to) believe that the ins. companies can handle this fairly. All I want is my car fixed (or if the repair will be more than what the car is worth, be paid for what the car's market value is), medical treatment, rental, and any necessary expenses covered.

Should I get a lawyer. Sometimes I do not know what to do. I feel like I'm at the mercy of the ins. companies. This accident was not my fault. And even though C hit me, it was nothing more than an accident. I'm sure he feels awful about it, and I do not want to add more grief to his life at the moment.

I will be speaking with my ins. agent this coming week. She said she still needs to speak to the third party (A), the car in front of me before everything can be worked out. If a car hits me from behind and causes me to hit the car in front of me, who is at fault for hitting the very first car?

I will stop here. It's depressing me even talking about it. Tell me, am I a fool for not getting a lawyer involved? Maybe they can work their magic. Thanks for understanding.

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Old 09-18-2002, 09:10 PM
eebasist
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well technically speaking you are at fault for hitting vehicle A. Some states might say you were following to closely and did not leave enough room between you and vehicle A. Most places will generally accept that getting hit from behind really trumps this since you could have been stoped and simply let of the brake or some other senario causing you to hit the car in front...because you were startled by car C. What does the police report say....if it states that car c hit a non-moving vehicle B(You) that then hit another non-moving vehicle A.....go get your rental because there ain't a damn thing they can do....You're also entitled to a loss of use claim for x/day times the number of days you're without the car........i'm suprised your tranny got messed up in this....but oh well thats life....if your car is a volvo 240 wagon they'll probalby be totalling your car now if its from the 80's because the repair will be quite high
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Old 09-18-2002, 09:42 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 352
C is at fault for hitting you in the back and you are probably at fault for hitting A. If I were A, I would put a claim against you. But as MB Brethren, my best advice is to wait for C's insurance to give you their view. A good idea is to write down everything about the accident down even your conversations because in a couple of weeks you will forget. Lawyers love personal injury cases, so if you were hurt go see a Dr. first. Then inform C's insurance of your medical expenses as well personal damages and at that point decide whether you want to get a lawyer. Try www.lawguru.com. Really good legal advice from a couple of lawyers.

Accidents are always depressing, so go and have some fun this weekend.

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