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A Car Hit Your House: Know Your Rights

Oddly enough, we have seen an increase in motor vehicles running into personal residences in the Memphis area the past few weeks. These accidents have caused significant personal injuries to the occupant and even extensive property damage.

Vehicles Running Into Residences in Memphis:

As reported by WREG Memphis on Feb. 9, 2017, a pickup truck slammed into a Whitehaven home, trapping the male occupant against a table wherein he sustained a broken leg.  One day later, WREG reported an accident involving an out-of-control vehicle that plowed thru a fence near Central Avenue at The Villas at Chickasaw Apartments.

Obviously, these accidents are products of driver error or negligence, causing avoidable damage to person and property. Many assume, “Well, the person who caused the damage will pay for it.”

While that sounds great in theory, it is not necessarily always the case.

Understanding Auto Insurance Claims in This Scenario:

As with most accident claims, the at-fault driver’s automobile insurance carrier will cover the cost of damages up to the policy limits. Unfortunately, when a car strikes a house, the damage can be significant and costly. If the driver carries minimal coverage on his or her vehicle, that may not be enough to cover the estimated repairs.  

In this instance, we advise our clients to always open a claim with their respective homeowner’s insurance carrier to guarantee their own carrier will make up the difference if there is a shortfall. While you may have to pay the deductible, it is wise to have that additional coverage available until repair work to the property is completed.  

If the at-fault driver is uninsured, you may sue the driver personally. However, collecting a judgment is highly unlikely. When an uninsured driver causes the accident, you have no choice but to report the claim to your own homeowner’s insurance carrier and pay the respective deductible so that repairs can begin.

If an uninsured driver takes his vehicle onto your property and strikes your parked vehicle, any related damage claims would be covered through your automobile insurance carrier, not homeowner’s insurance.  

If you or your property have been damaged due to the negligence of another person, the first step is to immediately document the damage using photographs and video. You should also call the insurance carrier for the at-fault party and your own carrier so that the necessary appraisals and estimates can be gathered, and the work may begin.  

One important note to remember regarding property damage claims is the at-fault party and his or her insurance carrier is only responsible for putting you back to where you were prior to the accident. In short, they do not have to pay you new replacement value for used property. Also, they can take into account any previous depreciation in value and only pay you the actual present-day cash value.

Hire A Memphis Lawyer To Help:

If you have experienced significant property damage or want to file an injury claim, you need an experienced attorney to help you through the process. The Chiozza Law Firm has handled thousands of property damage, automobile, bus and motorcycle accident cases through the years, achieving substantial settlements and verdicts.  

We are a firm that you can trust, as evidenced by our reasonable fee arrangements and past history. Call 901-526-9494 for a free consultation or contact Brian Chiozza at brian@chiozzalaw.com for immediate assistance.

It costs absolutely nothing to speak with an attorney at The Chiozza Law Firm about your case, but it can cost you more than you think if you don’t consult with an experienced attorney.

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Posted by Brian Chiozza at 7:19 AM
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