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Rear ended: Person was working and driving co. vehicle

Discussion in 'Accidents, Injuries, Negligence' started by badluck, Apr 6, 2005.

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  1. badluck

    badluck Law Topic Starter New Member

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    This is a lengthy question.

    I was rear ended last week, was at a complete stop. The person who rear ended me was driving his company's truck back to work after a job. This is a major company in this area...
    The circumstances...

    615 still light out, there was another accident on the shoulder of the road, (two lane road)...people were tending to this accident. The cars in front of me slowed to a complete stop. I stopped and (did not hit the car in front of me), the next thing I know the man behind me slammed into me (est. 45 mph), ripping the entire back-end of my car off. The damages are somewhat significant although they do not warrant a "total loss".

    I did not seek treatment at the scene (I was on the way to my grandfathers viewing)...
    Awful timing..

    There was a police report made and the driver received a citation for failure to slow down to avoid causing an accident. The district manager of that company happened to drive by and see the accident. He stopped and photographed the two cars (as did I).
    It is a clear case as far as fault. I did not stop short (did not hit the car in front of me).

    We exchanged insurance info at the scene. I did seek medical attention the next afternoon as the pain increased quite significantly. I am still in pain today. I do have a stained neck (whiplash) and this exacerbated the arthritis in my back....which I didn't have before...well, pain from at least.

    I just started a new job and handling this is putting me in bad light....I will have to take time off to seek further treatment to take preventative measures to avoid continuous reoccurring pain.

    The company's insurance company is Liberty Mutual. I was told by my insurance company Nationwide that I was to contact Liberty to file a claim (for repairs to my car and medical expenses etc.)
    I did so and did not hear back from them for 7 days. At that time the adjuster---irritated that I had called so many times asked me "what is it that I can do for you?"

    Question one...
    Is this normal to not hear from them, to be treated badly...etc.
    Do they have to pay for the repairs to my car, medical bills, rental, medicines, time off etc.
    I have done some research and it would appear so. The other question is --
    Is the company also at fault....he was driving their car and on the clock.

    I also wondered about "pain and suffering"...that is a gray area...

    The shear frustration alone should be worth something. I am by nature not litigious. I am however extremely disappointed in this process and lack of attentiveness...I do understand that is the "insurance business".

    I believe given the fact that I am suffering time loss from work, the embarrassment of being almost missing at my grandfathers viewing, spending out of pocket money at the doctor etc. should warrant some kind of compensation.

    How do I go about taking care of this?

    I am a licensed driver, no previous accidents, no alcohol/drugs involved, fully inusred.
  2. NYClex

    NYClex New Member

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    Basically it is as you said: a relatively routine case. Of course, every case is special to the people who are involved in it and it can easily become special for everyone else, so it is never to be underestimated.

    If the facts are as you said it looks very much like the driver who rearended you is at fault and you probably are not. In a state that does not follow "no fault laws" it means that he will be liable, his injurance has to pay. If the driver was on a com,pany trip with the company car most probably the company is vicariously liable, too. They are liable for all damages proximately resulting from the accident, that is damage to car and you. Of course, here it is where things usually get tiricky: how to prove things like whiplash etc. Here you need to work with your doctors. See what the insurance co. will say and offer. If you feel unsure how to handle this and there seems to be more than just minor damage you should seek consultation from a personal injury attorney.

    If this all happened in a no-fault-state, things are a little different. Then it is your own insurance who will be liable, the driver and the company are out of the picture. Your insurance should be explaining that to you, if that is the case. But even there, if you feel somehow uncomfortable, consult an attorney.

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