What to do if I was in a car accident for which I at fault and while no one was seriously hurt the damages exceeded my insurance coverage?

I now will owe about $22,000, and that is more money than I have usually made in a year. I did just get a new job 3 months ago, but I am worried about not being able to afford to live and make all the payments I need to make. Is there anything I can do to try and negotiate that number down or am I just stuck making minimal payments for years now? Should I see a lawyer or a bank for a loan?

Asked on December 1, 2015 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

It would be advisable to file bankruptcy.  Chapter 7 bankruptcy is straight liquidation which eliminates certain types of debt including the amount you owe from the auto accident.
If you don't file bankruptcy, a future court judgment from a lawsuit filed against you in this case will be enforced with a wage garnishment.


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