Is it worth suing the at-fault party in an auto accident if they lied to their insurance company about what happened and they won’t accept liability?

I was side-swiped by a driver who then appeared to have been trying to flee afterwards, but I got in his way and he then pulled into a parking lot instead of stopping on the road where the accident happened. I called the police though he was trying to negotiate how much it would cost to fix the damage on my car and we both told the police what happened, which is that he hit me. However, he told his insurance company that I hit him which is a lie.The police report states that he ran into my vehicle, yet his insurance still won’t pay.

Asked on March 22, 2012 under Accident Law, Alabama


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If he has insurance and you believe you have a reasonable chance of establishing that it was the other driver's fault (based on police reports, any witness testimony, nature of the damage, etc.), then it likely would be worth suing him--if you can establish fault, you should be able to recover compensation.  (The standard of proof is "preponderance of the evidence"--that is, you must provide evidence showing that it is "more likely than not" that he was at fault and caused the damage.) If he does not have insurance, it would be worth it if you believe you can show that it's his fault and also believe he is solvent--has the income and/or assets to pay a judgment against him. If he insolvent, however, and has no insurance, it's probably not worth the expense of suing.

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