What are my rights if my car was rear-ended on the freeway and the police report shows that is was the other’s drivers fault and they were also cited for driving too close?

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What are my rights if my car was rear-ended on the freeway and the police report shows that is was the other’s drivers fault and they were also cited for driving too close?

The repair to fix my car was almost $10,000. We had to rent a car while the car was being repaired and that came to $1600. The other’s person insurance said their maximum payout is $10,000 and now are not even returning calls from us, we have sent them the receipts as aksed to do. However, nothing from the insurance has come in writing. It has now been 3 months since the accident and we are sitting on a bill for $1600 for an accident in no way our fault. What can we do?

Asked on September 30, 2015 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

IF the insurance limit was $10,000, that is all the insurer would have to pay an insurance policy is a contract, and insurers only have to pay up to the amount in/on that contract. 
However, that does not mean that you can't get more money--you can potentially recover money directly from the at-fault driver. He is not limited to only paying what he has insurance for it's simply that insurance, if he has it, will pay up to a certain amount and he is responsible for all sums over that. For $1,600, a good idea might be to sue in small claims court, acting as your own attorney "pro se" so as to save on legal fees.
Or if you never received the $10,000 offered by the other insurer your question dos not make clear whether your received that money or not, you would sue for the full $11,600, in which case, you'd need to sue in "regular" country court. You could still represent yourself as your own attorney, but in this case, may wish to consider hiring an attorney.


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