Do I have a chance at proving I was not at fault for backing out of a parking space and hitting a car and I am without auto insurance.

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Do I have a chance at proving I was not at fault for backing out of a parking space and hitting a car and I am without auto insurance.

Parked in a private parking lot, I was backing out of a space when a driver came speeding in. My rear bumper is clearly scrapped from their passing motion and pushed to one side. Another driver in the lot ran over and gave me her information stating she saw it all and that the other driver was clearly at fault as I was only rolling back with perfect timing for a hit. Thier car is damaged behind the passenger door. I feel that I am stuck to pay as my auto insurance is not valid and I am only one point away from a suspended license at the DMV if reported.

Asked on June 20, 2009 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

You are in a bind here, I'm afraid.  The party going down the lane has the right of way.  If they were speeding, there is probably some shared liability.  In a "normal" situation, where both parties have insurance, the insurance companies duke it out and come to a decision regarding percentages of fault.  Since you have no insurance, you could sue the other party in small claims court and have the judge decide.  You do have a witness who could testify about the speed of the other driver, so you might have an edge.  I don't think a parking lot accident will hurt your license here.  Has the other party contacted you about paying for their damages?  You might be able to work something out with them to go 50-50.  Wait a while and see what happens.


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