I driver ran through my fence, damaged my yard and hit two of my vehicles. but only has ten thousand worth of insurance. He also hit another vehicle, prior to hitting my cars. What I can do to get my cars back to their original shaped?

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I driver ran through my fence, damaged my yard and hit two of my vehicles. but only has ten thousand worth of insurance. He also hit another vehicle, prior to hitting my cars. What I can do to get my cars back to their original shaped?

Three cars damaged on 4/14/2017. Insurance company is splitting the 10K between
the four claims. Based upon a weigh-average. I am to receive approximately 3400
and it cost approximately 9,000 to fit my cars and make repairs to my fence and
yard.

What are my options?

Asked on August 1, 2017 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You can sue the at-fault driver for any costs (including repair costs) you incur which exceed the payment you receive from their insurer. The limits of their insurance do not limit their liability, or what they may be responsible or liable for; it only limits how much insurance will pay for them. Any balance or amount over that, they would have to pay out of pocket, were you to sue them and (presumably, based on what you write) win.
Two issues to be aware of:
1) If you sign any settlement or release agreement from their insurer when they give you the $3,400, which agreement states that the amount you are receiving is payment in full of your claims and/or that by accepting payment, you are giving up your right to sue, in doing so, you will contractually obligating yourself to NOT sue. Make sure that any document(s) you sign don't bar you from suing for the balance.
2)  If the other driver has a small (or no) income and little in the way of assets, even if you sue him or her, you may not get any money: a successful lawsuit and a court judgment in your favor does not make money appear where there is none.


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