If I hit a parked car and left a scratch on the bumper, what is my responsibility financially?

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If I hit a parked car and left a scratch on the bumper, what is my responsibility financially?

I decided to pay out of pocket for the damage. However the owner of the other car has told me to pay for the damage, rental car and the time he took off work. And I supposed to pay for all of these?

Asked on August 14, 2014 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

If you were negligent, or careless, in causing the damage--as you would have been to hit a parked car--you would be liable for the repair costs; for a reasonable car rental during the time his car was being repaired; and if he missed work as a direct result of the accident (e.g. not being to get into work the day of the accident), for lost wages. Of course, if you refuse to pay part of this, he'd have to sue you--and win--to get a court order (a "judgment") requiring you to pay, and that has its own costs for him. Therefore, it is likely in both your interests to negotiate to an amount you are both comfortable with.


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