I got into accident and my insurance was lapsed

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Latest post 12-08-2010 11:43 PM by adjuster jack. 2 replies.
  • 12-08-2010 9:52 PM

    • linaina
      Consumer
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 12-09-2010
    • CA
    • Posts 1

    I got into accident and my insurance was lapsed

    I got into a car accident. it was my fault I hit the car from the back. After I called my insurance company I found out that my insurance was lapsed. I didn't know that there was such a problems since they didn't notify me nor by mail or phone and I've been with them more than a year. They are saying that my payment was diclined, but I don't know how it possible since I just updated my info. I'm not sure if I have a grace period.

    So, right now the damages worth $1000 but the guy claims that he has medical problems and he would need a treatment for 2 years! He says that he has pain in his legs. He is claiming his insurance company, but they just called me and said that they will run after me to pay off. The guy didn't want to discuss and options of me paying him for the damages he just hired an attorney and didn't even tell me. All, that I found out from his insurance company.

    I'm a poor student and coming from low income family, I would never be able to pay for his medical problems. In fact, he is just lying!!! I barely, hit his car and he was completly fine and didn't go to the hospital after an accident. From the picture that I have of his car you can see that only damage that he has is a little paint scratch, that's it.

    My quetion, is how I can defend myself?! I don't have money to hire an attorney, plus it is unfair he just trying to rip me off! And why his insurance company can call me and say how much I have to pay off if they don't even have an estimate of his medical issues?! Is there any places I can go and appeal? If something will the judge by looking on my insurance payment history and pictures from accident understand that it is a fraud?! I understand that I have to pay for repair, but why I have to pay for his "medical problems" that never exist? Plus, I gave my insurance card to policeman and he didn't say that there is any problems with that nor gave me any tickets for unvalid insurance.

    Please, help with advice!

     

  • 12-08-2010 10:02 PM In reply to

    • Kivi
      Consumer
    • Top 25 Contributor
    • Joined on 01-01-2005
    • CA
    • Posts 6,124

    Re: I got into accident and my insurance was lapsed

    1. Generally, when your insurance is about to lapse, the company does send a notice. However, you indicate that you are a student. If you are like most students, you often have multiple addresses during the course of the year. Therefore, you will need to verify with your insurance company what address they used to send the notice of lapsed insurance. Unfortunately, if you failed to update your insurance company with your new address that's on you. But, I would make them prove to you that you did not have insurance on the date of this accident.

    2. If you truly cannot pay, you can refuse. The other side would have to sue you and get a judgment.If your insurance truly had lapsed, you are going to have to "muddle thru" if you cannot afford an attorney.

    3. Unfortunately for you, if you do get a judgment against you and you cannot pay, you are looking at getting your license to drive suspended. While you likely can get a judgment to pay dismissed in bankruptcy, a bankruptcy court cannot reinstate your driver's license.

    Very hard lesson to learn if you truly failed to keep your insurance company advised of your current address and you did not balance your checkbook or check your credit card statements to verify that your payment went thru.

    If your insurance company backs down and decides you were insured, turn this matter over to them to handle. They will know what to do.

  • 12-08-2010 11:43 PM In reply to

    Re: I got into accident and my insurance was lapsed

    linaina:
    After I called my insurance company I found out that my insurance was lapsed. I didn't know that there was such a problems since they didn't notify me nor by mail or phone and I've been with them more than a year. They are saying that my payment was diclined, but I don't know how it possible since I just updated my info. I'm not sure if I have a grace period.

    Couple of things you should check.

    1 - Call your state insurance department to see if they can point you the statutes and insurance department rules that regulate how the insurance company must notify you of premiums due, non-payment or lapses.

    2 - Then read your policy to see if it conforms to those rules.

    3 - You also have to carefully examine your policy dates (from and to) to see if you rode the expiration to closely or missed it completely by the time you updated your information.

    Insurance companies have some rather strict procedures for billing, late notices and non-pay cancellation (and the record keeping that goes along with it) just so that they can avoid getting sued by a policyholder when there's an accident after the policy lapses.

     

    linaina:

    So, right now the damages worth $1000 but the guy claims that he has medical problems and he would need a treatment for 2 years! He says that he has pain in his legs. He is claiming his insurance company, but they just called me and said that they will run after me to pay off. The guy didn't want to discuss and options of me paying him for the damages he just hired an attorney and didn't even tell me. All, that I found out from his insurance company.

    I'm betting that the $1000 is just for the damages to his car and that's all his insurance company cares about having you reimburse them for.

    linaina:
    I would never be able to pay for his medical problems. In fact, he is just lying!!! I barely, hit his car and he was completly fine and didn't go to the hospital after an accident. From the picture that I have of his car you can see that only damage that he has is a little paint scratch, that's it.

    Maybe you are right. But he sees you as a prize pigeon with no insurance who might get scared into shovelling money his way.

    linaina:
    why I have to pay for his "medical problems" that never exist?
    linaina:
    My quetion, is how I can defend myself?! I don't have money to hire an attorney, plus it is unfair he just trying to rip me off!

    Frankly, you don't have to pay a nickel until and unless a court of law says so. Meantime I suggest you keep your mouth shut and not talk to him or his lawyer or anybody else. If you get served a lawsuit, you then can get to figure out what to do.

    linaina:
    I gave my insurance card to policeman and he didn't say that there is any problems with that nor gave me any tickets for unvalid insurance.

    That's because the officer relies on your card. He can't be calling everybody's insurance company to verify coverage every time he responds to an accident.

    However, it's possible that you might get cited for all that once the authorities do find out that you didn't have insurance at the time of the accident.

     

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