To Sue, or not to Sue?


Active member
Yep, that is the dilemma i am faced with right now.

Let me tell you what had lead me to this point.

About 30 days ago we woke up to find out that one of our cars war hit by another car.
The car that hit us was gone, not there. We later found it around the corner. It was there because of course it could not run any further. So they left it there and ran. By now this was obviously a hit and run.

So i proceed to call the police. They come out and take all the information down, proceed to file a warrant against the person that was driving. Turns out this person had already been in jail for another hit and run and it had not been 4 days since his release when he hit our car.

So the cop is getting the car towed. Then the kids parents show up. Raising all kind of hell because they are towing their car. The cops asks them to provide insurance. So they do. I proceed to call their insurance and place a claim. 10 days later i get a letter from the insurance saying that they denied the claim. They say that the kid was not covered. So they cannot provide coverage.

So i proceed to call my attorney. They send out a demand letter. They then get a letter back from these people stating that they were sorry, and that they cannot pay us, so to proceed with what ever we were going to do.

My attorney says that i should file the claim, and sue them, or forget about it. But the damage is pretty extensive to our vehicle. It will take around 6k to get it fixed. So now i am will be out of pocket for 6k, plus all the court fees and attorney fees.

According to my attorney, this kid is back in jail for this. He also stated that these people were selling their house, which i already knew, but that if a judgment is placed on them, this would prevent them from being able to sell their house until they payed off the judgment.

I am really confused by it all. I want to sue, but then i don't want to go through all the hassle of doing it. NOTE: I am not a sue happy camper. I hate it, so this is one of the major factors for this as well.

So your input will help me out a lot on this. What ever course of action i decided to take, i have to do it ASAP.


Well-known member
Sue sue sue..... Oh wait I am not your lawyer Doh!

But seriously... wouldn't your own insurance cover it?


Active member
It does, but you know what happens if i put it on my insurance. Your premium goes up. And that is something i do not want to do.

Does anyone know if your home owners will cover it?


It sucks that they are put in a position that is uncomfortable for them, and has consequences, but they have a son that used their car or his own car, and has a history doing this, being in jail, or selling their house, etc. It's their problem, and they only made it your problem by causing damage. If not you, the guy could have hit a kid in the street, or could have learned from his mistake and stayed home or got a cab to drive around.

He's made damage, you are not responsible for the damage caused, he is. It's something he has to live with.


Well-known member
I feel sorry for the parents, but it shouldn't be down to you to suffer the consequences of his bad behaviour, and as Floris said, it could easily have been a child or a person he hit!


Well-known member
I would go ahead and sue... (But I am no lawyer) as it is said above it isn't your responsibility to deal with this it is his and theirs...


Well-known member
To sue someone that you know can not afford it, is not an easy choice to make. Why not tell them what the bill is, and have the lawyer draw up a contract that states they will pay the bill for your car damages on condition of their house being sold? If they still can't afford it because they have no equity built up in their home, you won't receive nothing from them, if you sue, anyways.

As they let an uninsured driver drive their car, I think they have a bit more trouble as well, and their auto insurance company most likely will raise their rates through the roof. Unless they report their car stolen, and that is another issue.

No matter what you do, it looks like you will be footing the bill. Personally, knowing the family's situation, I would let it go.


Active member
No matter what you do, it looks like you will be footing the bill. Personally, knowing the family's situation, I would let it go.
So, if i let it go, i will not only be out of a vehicle because it is un-drivable, but i will be out more than 6K. I mean the vehicle costs me 18K. That is the dilemma. A huge one that is driving me nuts. Not sure yet as to what exactly to do. But they have to pay no matter what i guess.


Well-known member
Could you work out an arrangement with the kid (or his parents) to pay your additional Insurance premiums for a period of X years (X being the time your insurer will reduce it again due to no claims)

That way they have to pay.. but it is an amount they can probably do, and you are not actually out of pocket.


Well-known member
look here
if the vehicle owner is insured your covered and they are trying to play ball right now.
They took responsibility for that driver when they let him use the car... they only way they are not responsible is if they file a report for the car being stolen... to further that how is his choice and their concision choice costing you.
Does he live in their home or not? it matters as if he doesn't and they loaned him the vehicle they are responsible, if he does and they didn't put him on the policy then they broke their insurance policies rules and if you have a name and a plate number that's should be all you need to get reparation. The car is insured thats all you need to worry about, they have to explain why there son wasnt insured and using their car.... also that brings up a point did he have his own insurance or was he stated on their policy?


Active member
According to the insurance company, they have a signed statement stating that he is not allowed to drive their cars. When i asked for the proof, they said they cannot provide that information. He lives with them, and now they have the car that hit us back and it is repaired. So this really pissed me off to see that. No as far as i know he does not have his own policy.

So i just got the paper work for small claims court. I tell you something it's quite a procedure.

Anthony Parsons

Well-known member
Are you not insured yourself? Don't you guys have what we call comprehensive insurance (full insurance)? That way if anyone hits your car and you don't get them, then you can still claim and have your car fixed with only paying a small excess, ie. $500.


Well-known member
Sue them of course. You will win and all your costs are going to be compensated. Not sure why in doubt? If you can't afford to sue, ask for a loan with friends or parents and explain them you're sure to get it back because you have a strong case.

But I would first try to do it amicably.


Well-known member
LOL they signed a statement which violates policy by letting an at risk person not on the policy living in their home access to drive the car.....if your insurance company isn't aware of that fact let them know. Otherwise they made a deal with the other insurance company or infact are the same company in my past experience.
also in your state the event constitutes a class A or B misdemeanor , since it was damage to property he was not charged with a felonous act so you aren't guaranteed anything. But you can bet your bottom that his folks can be held liable to some degree for allowing him to use the car given his history and the fact that they are defrauding their insurance company by letting him drive especially since they signed an agreement which they had to I'm assuming because even an insurance company wouldn't cover him.

Reeve of Shinra

Well-known member
6k is a lot....

Option A: let your insurance deal with it. They have the expertise to properly go after the parents and their insurance company for it. Furthermore, I think a lot of insurance companies must do compromises with each other on ugly ones like this.

Option B: if you go on your own, get at least 3 or 4 quotes for the repairs. You also need estimated time for repair and some rental car estimates for the time you'll be without.

When you sue, name each parent, the child, and the insurance company as defendants. This is so you can have the sheriff go after each for the money and you don't get stiffed if one does not have.

In court, opt to see the judge - not the arbitrator. The arbitrator is more willing to split the difference in some way. Be prepared to back back 4 or 5 times and spend at least 2 hours each time.


Well-known member
I say sue

people enable a reckless person like him to do what he did and has done before and don't care about the ramifications to others...well i can't really say in public what i feel about people like that, and neither would a judge when they award you money. If your not going to sue for yourself.... sue to make people think before they let someone like him who has no regard for life or others peoples property gallivant around playing Russian roulette until theres a funeral and someones parents crying.( what his folks said to you and the way they did it about not being able to pay you & the do what you gotta do type-attitude for it says a lot about who they are and how he was raised) . Nowadays (in the US at any rate) people want freedom without responsibility but in today's world, nether can exist without the other. You owe it to every person who's been killed by a reckless person to at least go through the proceedings

That is my response to your thread starting question.

I really hope you make it clear in court that $8000 damage to your car is just the money which they owe in the most matter of fact-ish way , but that you feel in retrospect to the damages he could have caused had fate put something in place of your car...say another car with people in it or a kid on a bike would have been a calamity in comparison or something along those lines.

and for the record liens and wage garnishments work great for people who owe and don't pay :)
Nowadays (in the US at any rate) people want freedom without responsibility but in today's world, nether can exist without the other. You owe it to every person who's been killed by a reckless person to at least go through the proceedings
^ This. You need to send a message. If you have this strong a case against these moronic idiots, and the money to cover the fees, then go ahead and proceed.

I'm no lawyer, so this consultation should not be taken as a legal advice.