If I hit a car and had no insurance, do I need to pay their insurance for their damages?

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If I hit a car and had no insurance, do I need to pay their insurance for their damages?

I hit a car and got a DUI, I didn’t have insurance though and now their insurance
is saying I need to pay for the damages but before I got that letter from their
insurance I paid their deductible, 1000, and had them sign a paper that states
they cannot come after me for any more money or anything else.

Asked on April 20, 2018 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, the agreement you signed with the other car's owner does not bind or obligate their *insurer*, which was not a party or signatory to the agreement. A contract, including an agreement like the one you describe, only affects or controls the people who signed it. Since the insurer was not a party to the contract, the agreement to not seek money from you has no effect on them. Since the law allows an insurer to seek compensation from somone who was at-fault (like being DUI) in causing the damage or injuries for which the insurer had to pay (this is called "subrogation"), the insurer can seek repayment from you of the amounts it had to pay out to its insured, and sue you if you do not voluntarily agree to pay.


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