What to do fi I was at fault for a minor car accident but my auto insurance had lapsed?

UPDATED: Jan 8, 2014

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What to do fi I was at fault for a minor car accident but my auto insurance had lapsed?

I’m willing to pay reasonable repair costs out of my own pocket but the estimate I received from the other party’s mechanic seems rather high for a minor fender bender. How can I be assured he isn’t trying to get more money than the damage was worth (it’s a really old truck and there is no damage to my vehicle at all), and make sure he doesn’t come back and try to get more money later?

Asked on January 8, 2014 under Accident Law, Texas


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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

To be certain that the other party isn't asking for more than the actual estimate, you should request that the estimate of the damage to the other vehicle be in writing from his mechanic.  If you still think the mechanic's estimate is too high, you can ask the other driver for an estimate from another mechanic, but he might refuse.  Any estimate you receive from the other party should always be in writing.

To prevent him from asking for more money in the future, you need a settlement agreement signed by both parties.  The standard language of settlement agreements can be found at the law library.  Ask the law librarian to help you find it.



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