What to do if I sold my car to my son about 2 years ago but he never put it into his name and now he has had an accident with no insurance?

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What to do if I sold my car to my son about 2 years ago but he never put it into his name and now he has had an accident with no insurance?

I signed over title and gave it to him. I just got a call from an insurace company (the other person’s insurer) telling me that there my son apparently backed out of a parking lot and hit a vehicle. There was no citation given to either party. I called my son and he told me what had happened. He also told me that his insurance had lapsed and that he never had the registration changed from my name into his. I just got a call from my son’s provider and with which I currently have my own car insured. I don’t know the damage. I left a voicemail for the insurance company. Now I’m afraid that I may have said too much; I told them that I sold him the car years ago and signed over the title but didn’t know if he registered it. Am I liable? Is my son?

Asked on August 22, 2013 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

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

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Since you are still listed as the registered owner of your son's car because registration was not transferred to your son, you are liable for the accident.

Since the insurance had lapsed, as the registered owner, you will be sued for negligence for the property damage (cost of repairs) to the other car that was not at fault in the accident.  Although your son may also be named as a defendant in that lawsuit, you would be the party held liable since you are the registered owner of the vehicle.


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