What to do if after an accident my insurer took my car out of the pound, fixed it,and soldit after my insurance was supposed to be canceled?

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What to do if after an accident my insurer took my car out of the pound, fixed it,and soldit after my insurance was supposed to be canceled?

My wife had a car accident back in 2008. At the time I forgot to pay my insurance. So a week later after the accident, the insurance company said that they could’t help us because the insurance elapsed or was canceled. My car was in the pound at the time but I had no money to take it out (but was saving money to do so). A week later I found out that my insurer took the car out of the pound. I was so confused. They wanted me to pay them for getting the car out the pound and pay for storage (where they had my car at). I said no because I thought that my insurance was canceled.

Asked on September 4, 2010 under Insurance Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If your car was impounded, was it because it was considered totalled? Why was it impounded in the first place? Usually that only occurs if there was a criminal violation and the police had taken the car as a result of a required tow.  If not, and it was simply towed to a tow yard like at a mechanic, that is a different story.  So, in essence you owned the vehicle but didn't have access to it and your insurance company told you (hope they supported it in writing) that your insurance had lapsed.  If your insurance had lapsed, your insurance company had no business taking your vehicle.  So, you need to immediately contact your state's department of insurance and file a complaint regarding insurance bad faith, fraud and theft.   Simultaneously, contact the police and file an auto theft charge against your insurance company and the individuals involved and you may wish to contact a personal injury attorney who has experience with insurance bad faith or fraud or unfair and deceptive activity.  


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