New City, NY asked in Car Accidents for New York

Q: I was involved in an accident where the other driver was clearly at fault. My car is totaled.

My truck is only worth 5500.00. It has plow a plow frame that is permanently installed and without it I can not use the plow. The insurance company will pay for the plow frame but to have a new one installed on a new truck is an expense they say that are not responsible for. Isn't the at fault party responsible for all of my expenses caused by the accident. Even if I were to get a new truck for what they are giving me for mine, I will still have an additional expense of 2700.00 to be made whole. How can they refuse to pay this? If they won't pay it, can I sue the driver in small claims court? Im sure I will have to sign a release saying I am accepting this as settlement. The driver was not the owner of the car so can I sue her? All I want is to have my expenses taken care of.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Michael Bersani
Michael Bersani
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Auburn, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: The case is too small to get a lawyer involved. Sue the driver/owner of the at-fault vehicle in SMALL CLAIMS court. It's just about free and you don't need a lawyer. The insurance carrier will be required to "defendant and indemnify" its insured in Small Claims. Show your proof to the Small Claims judge. Let's see what happens!

Peter N. Munsing
Peter N. Munsing
Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Wyomissing, PA

A: On a total loss what you get is the value of the truck, with frame, as it was if it were sold the minute before the crash. If that value is what you are offered, that is all they have to give you--they don't have to give you replacement value. You will need someone who will give you an estimate with explanation.

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