If my car was hit in my apartment parking lot and the at-fault driver and I decided to handle it between ourselves and not report it, what are my rights now if they are not paying me as agreed?

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If my car was hit in my apartment parking lot and the at-fault driver and I decided to handle it between ourselves and not report it, what are my rights now if they are not paying me as agreed?

My car was hit in the parking lot outside my apartment about 8 months ago I wasn’t home during that time. Luckily a witness was kind enough to gather the information and give it to me. However, the driver (my neighbor’s mother) did not have any insurance and the incident went unreported (horrible decision). An agreement was made to fix the car, I received a quote for $788 and she had a “friend” to fix it. The “friend” was located in a sketchy area and provided me with no information and I did not feel comfortable. She negotiated to pay me $400 cash and has only paid me $200. This has been going on for over 6 months and she continuously changes her plans for payment. I would like to know if there is anything that could be done in court?

Asked on June 22, 2015 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, if she was at fault, she has to pay the cost to repair the damage. If she is not voluntarily paying, you could sue her, such as in small claims court, to recover the money. In small claims court, you can act as your own attorney, saving on legal fees, making it very cost-effective. If you win, you'll get a judgment (a court determination) that she must pay you. You actually have two different grounds to sue her on, from what you write; breach of contract (violating her agreement to pay) and negligence (carelessly causing damage to your car).


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