Do I have to respond to the other partys letter from their insurance provider?

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Do I have to respond to the other partys letter from their insurance provider?

I was involved in an accident where I was ticketed for following to close. At the time my insurance had a lapse in coverage, which I was unaware of at the time. I reinstated my insurance, but they said they would not cover the accident, as it was reinstated after the incident. I just received a letter from their insurance, asking for details, to find out who was at fault and if they should cover their insured party or not. The letter is not addressed to me correctly, it is addressed to my middle name and last name, instead of first and last. Should I/Am I legally responsible for responding to this letter? The damage was very minimal, but am worried they will sue me. What do I do?

Asked on July 12, 2017 under Accident Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You don't need to respond to any letters or other inquires unless and until the insurer or the other driver sues you; however, once one or both of them sues you, they can potentially use legal mechanisms or processes called "discovery" (e.g. written questions, called "interrogatories"; document production requests; depositions) to force you to answer. In lawsuits--but only in lawsuits--there are techniques for compelling others involved in or witnesses to the accident to respond.


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