It's a scary thought to think that you could one day be in the unfortunate position of being hit by a car without even knowing it. The worst part about being hit is the pain and damage that come along with it, especially if the driver does not have insurance. That's why we are going to share with you what you should do if someone hits your parked car, as well as what you can do after the accident to get your vehicle fixed and whether you can sue someone for hitting your parked car or not.
What should you do first when your parked car has been hit?
The first step after an accident is to document your damages. Collect eyewitness statements and photographs of the scene. and follow these steps:
- Don't leave the scene or move your vehicle.
- If possible, try to locate the person who hit your car and exchange information.
- Take photos and contact the authorities to file a police report: You should take pictures of the damage before leaving and get an estimate from the repair shop so that you have proof of how much it will cost to repair. It is possible that insurance companies will try to get around this by denying liability for hitting a parked car because they say that it wasn't actually parked there. In order to force them into paying, you'll need evidence that proves otherwise.
- Contact your insurer and ask for advice on whether to sue.
Can You Sue Someone for Hitting Your Parked Car?
If someone else hit your car while it was parked in a public place, report it to the police immediately. Can you sue someone for hitting your parked car? The answer is yes, you can sue someone for hitting your parked car. But before you do, read on to learn more about the laws in your state and your insurance coverage. Whether you have to pay depends on that.
If you live in a no-fault state, you can't usually sue the other driver.
Unfortunately, unless you can prove the other driver acted intentionally or with gross negligence, you cannot sue the other driver's insurance company for property damage.
In no-fault states, the law requires that all drivers carry a minimum insurance amount. The driver who causes an auto accident is required to buy insurance regardless of whether they have been at fault. As a result, your own insurance policy should cover your losses for a parked car accident up to the limit of your coverage.
If you have a collision and someone hits your car while it's legally parked, the law requires that you be compensated for those losses.
You can sue the person who hit your parked car for damages in at-fault states.
In at-fault states, you can sue the driver who hit your car and shouldn’t have to pay for your losses.
If you're covered by comprehensive or collision coverage, you'll have to file a claim with your insurer and submit proof of liability in court. Your insurer will then decide whether or not to settle with the other driver.
If you aren't covered by comprehensive or collision coverage, you'll need to file a claim with your state's motor vehicle department (MVD) before any lawsuit can be filed against the driver responsible for hitting your parked car. The MVD will determine if there are any claims worth pursuing and will notify both parties of their rights and obligations as well as provide information about how to proceed with litigation in court.
If the damage is severe enough, then you might be able to seek compensation for your loss of use of your vehicle.
What happens when you can not identify the at-fault driver?
When you think someone hit your parked car and drove away, call the police. Can you sue for hit and run parked car? Yes, you can file a report with them and ask for an investigation. The police can investigate to find the responsible driver and possibly prosecute him or her for driving on a suspended license or other illegal violations. That person may face criminal charges, and you may also be entitled to financial compensation for the damage to your vehicle.
If the hit-and-run driver is caught and convicted of hitting a parked car, he or she may face up to one year in jail as well as paying fines and court costs.
If the driver can’t be found, your insurer may cover your losses as an uninsured driver if you elected that type of insurance coverage. However, if you don’t call the police and notify your insurance company without delay—or if you don’t have insurance or your damages exceed your maximum limits—you may be liable for any damages caused by someone hitting your parked car.
What if you were illegally parked?
If your car was parked in an unsafe manner (ex: in front of an intersection) so that it posed an accident risk when drivers approached, this too would be considered negligence on your part.
The law is clear that any vehicle parked in a way that makes it more dangerous than it needs to be is not only illegal but also creates an unreasonable risk of damage to another person's property and therefore can be dangerous in its own right.
The first thing to consider is whether the other driver was in the right. If you were illegally parked or creating a danger with your parked car, the other party might have a defense to the claim. There are also issues of liability and fault in parking disputes, and these factors can affect what kind of compensation you're entitled to receive. You should discuss your case with a lawyer before deciding whether to file a lawsuit if you were illegally parked.
Before filing a lawsuit, consult with an attorney.
The best way to avoid losing money when someone hits your parked car?
The best way to protect yourself from damage to your parked vehicle is to purchase collision or comprehensive coverage with your auto policy. This will cover damage caused by an accident with another vehicle, including when it's parked in a parking lot.
If someone hits your parked vehicle and causes damage to it, you'll want to file a claim with the at-fault driver's insurance company as soon as possible. If they don't respond within 30 days (or less), call their customer service department and ask them why they haven't paid. If you still have not heard back after 60 days (or less), contact an attorney and let them know what has happened so they can pursue legal action on your behalf against the at-fault driver's insurer.
A lawyer can help you determine if there are any other options besides filing a lawsuit against another driver's insurance company, like filing a personal injury lawsuit against the driver who hit yours.
Entrust in Browning Law Firm for the Best Solutions to Your Legal Advisory Needs
Can you sue someone for hitting your parked car? Yes, you can sue someone for hitting your parked car, but you'll need to prove the other driver's liability and the amount of damages you've suffered. If you do want to sue, get the right paperwork and file the lawsuit in small claims court. Don't hesitate to seek legal recourse when someone hits your parked car and causes damage.
It's possible to sue someone who hits your parked car if they are at-fault, although some cases are more successful than others. If you do want to sue, get the right paperwork and file the lawsuit in small claims court. A lot goes into filing a claim, but Browning Law will help you get through the process. Call us now for a free consultation.