Is there any recourse?
Get Legal Help Today
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
Is there any recourse?
A semi-truck slammed into a suburban which hit our daughter. She was the 3rd vehicle in a 4 vehicle accident. She was not at fault. Her vehicle is totaled. The insurance company settled for $12,200 minus our $500 deductible. She has a loan on the vehicle with a balance of $13,600. Does she have any recourse to get the amount raised to cover her loan? Can she do anything against the truck
driver who caused the accident?
Any information you could provide would be greatly appreciated. Don’t want to
spend the money on a lawyer if it is a waste of time. Might just as well cut our
Asked on May 15, 2018 under Accident Law, Wisconsin
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 3 years ago | Contributor
No, there is no recourse to get the balance of the loan; all she can get is the difference between what was paid to her (e.g. $11,700, taking account of the deductible) and the then-current (as of the time of the accident) fair market or "blue book" value of the car. The law does not car about what you paid for or owe on the car, since that varies so much--some people may get cars as gifts from family or a significant other; some people had good trade-ins or are good at negotiating deals, while others may have overpaid; etc. The law looks only to the provable fair market value of the vehicle to determine how much compensation you get. At a minimum, your daughter could sue the truck driver (and his employer and/or owner of the truck, if those are not all the same person) for her deductible, such as in small claims court, as her own attorney or "pro se." If the insurance settlement was overall low (e.g. FMV was $13,000, not $12,200), she could sue for the remainder of the FMV, too. But she cannot recover the loan balance.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.