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Car accident legal help please?


Last night I was driving in downtown D.C. looking for parking with my girlfriend. We had pre-purchased tickets to an event and it was almost starting. She told me if we were late they would not let us in so instead of parking on the street for free we had to go in one of those overpriced parking garages. Well I saw one for $8 which was the cheapest parking around. We were driving in my van down a busy street with traffic and cars parked all along the side of the road except for where the opening to the parking garage was. I was in the process of slowly making the turn in to the parking garage (can’t remember if I had my blinker on) when through my back tinted windows I noticed a biker going the same speed as me. I was going about 15-20 mph and I came to a stop to let the biker go by so I could make the turn when, slam!, the guy behind me in a 2011 Honda Accord hits my bumper. I get out to check and see if everything was okay. The left side of the bumper was hanging off my van just a little and his car had considerable (over $1000) damage. Immediately he says “What’s your deal why did you stop short; You stopped short; You stopped short on purpose didn’t you???” I told him my situation and he tried to get me to agree that it was the biker’s fault. I told him yes I know it was the biker’s fault, and lets keep insurance out of this. He said he was good with that. I was willing to let it slide completely because I have an old van and the bumper was already messed up from constant wear and tear- he didn’t make much of a difference. Either way we switched insurance information and he said he would call me the next morning after he takes a good look at it and decide for sure if he must go through insurance. We did not get a police report because my girlfriend and I had to make this event. This morning, surely enough he calls and says he has to go through insurance. Thank you for reading by the way. Here is where my question comes in. I haven’t gotten a call from my insurance, should I have? Will my insurance let me know if he made a claim on my insurance OR his insurance? Is there any way he can win this and get my company to pay out? If he does drag me into this I’m going to make his company pay for my bumper. Basically, I need to know what is going to happen, what I need to know, and what I need to do. Thank you much.



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3 Responses to "Car accident legal help please?"

  1. Steffanie says:
    -EDITED, mostly for awkward wording-

    Personally, I would recommend you put in a police report. The law typically gives you 72hrs to file a report after a minor accident if police were not called to the scene and usually you can just file a report quickly online through a minor accident report form(check local police website or state patrol).
    Generally(excluding specific “what if…?” circumstances), in the eyes of the law if you rear-end someone it is your fault because it usually means you were following too closely or not paying attention. If you are driving on city streets downtown think of the entirely possible chance someone or something runs out in front of you – you should be able to slam on your brakes to a complete stop and the person behind, if paying attention and giving proper distance, should not rear-end you and would probably be ticketed if they did.
    It seems that this would apply in your situation. If you were stopped or braking that would be something worth including since your brakelights should be considered a clear notice for other drivers to pay attention to. With an official police report you’ll have valuable documentation that it was his fault, not yours, and therefore that his insurance should pay(and that your insurance shouldn’t be affected in any way) just in case he tries to throw you under the bus, which unfortunately isn’t uncommon.

  2. Mushu says:
    You are not in any way at fault for this accident. You are entitled to have your damages covered, either by him personally (bad idea), or by his insurance company (better idea). If you don’t have his insurance information, you’ll have to claim from your own insurance and let them go after him for reimbursement (best idea).
  3. Scott H says:
    It wasn’t the biker’s fault, it was the guy driving the Accord who is at fault. He either was following too close or not paying attention.

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