What to do if Iwas rear-ended by a truck that was stolen?

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What to do if Iwas rear-ended by a truck that was stolen?

I live in MA; truck registered in NH. The owner’s insurer told me they are not responsible because the truck was reported stolen 30 minutes after I was backboarded. i went to the hospital.

Asked on September 19, 2011 under Accident Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If the truck was truly stolen (e.g. the facts as reported by the insurer are true and can be corrobarated), then the truck's insurer would not be responsible for the accident; and the truck's owner would not be responsible personally unless you can show the he was implicated in the theft (e.g. that he hired someone to steal the truck to commit insurance fraud). The simple fact is, owner and insurer are generally not responsible for accidents involving a stolen vehicle.

You could try to sue whomever stole the truck, but since vehicle thieves often have little income or assets--and would not be covered by insurance during the course of their theft--this may not help; you could win the lawsuit but be unable to recover anything. This may, unfortunately, be a case where the victim does not have any effective recourse.


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