What to do if my son keyed a person’s car out of anger and now they are demanding he put money in their bank account and pay for a rental car, plus pain and suffering?

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What to do if my son keyed a person’s car out of anger and now they are demanding he put money in their bank account and pay for a rental car, plus pain and suffering?

He is putting his car in Monday and demanding the money by Friday. He does not have the money of $2,000 plus which I think is a might much. He also said he is also now going to press charges. We feel that the person is trying to take advantage of the situation.

Asked on February 13, 2015 under Criminal Law, Virginia

Answers:

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

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Tell the person who is demanding compensation that you need to see an itemized estimate from an auto body shop and that there is no pain and suffering for property damage.  Pain and suffering is for a personal injury claim NOT property damage.  The amount he is demanding is inflated if he is claiming pain and suffering.

As for the rental car, the person has to mitigate (minimize) damages by selecting a rental car with a reasonable rate.  If he selects the most expensive rental car he can find, he has failed to mitigate damages and his damages will be reduced accordingly.  Damages means the amount of monetary compensation he is seeking.

As for the rental car, be sure that the rental car is only for the period when his car is in the repair shop.

If these issues can't be resolved with this individual, tell him to sue in Small Claims Court.

Criminal charges filed against your son are separate from the civil case (lawsuit).  If criminal charges are filed, it would be advisable to speak with a criminal defense attorney.

 


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