Legal Question in Civil Litigation in California

A car next to my car caught on fire and it jumped to my car. Now their insurance will not cover my car damage which is totaled. The people that own the car will not cover my car either. Can I sue them for the damage to my car?

Asked on 12/02/15, 2:48 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Gerald Dorfman Dorfman Law Office

Of course you can sue; the real question is how likely are to to win your lawsuit. In order to hold someone responsible for accidental damage, you must show some degree of negligence on their part. For example, if their car caught on fire because it was hit by lightening, negligence would not be the legal cause of your damage. On the other hand, if their car caught on fire because they were smoking crack and they dropped a burning pipe on the seat, that would be a clear case of negligence. In the middle would be a case where the likely cause of their fire was improper maintenance or repair of the vehicle. So depending on the facts (especially what you can prove) you may be able to recover from them. If you car was not worth too much, you could bring a case in small claims court. You should get a review from an attorney in a brief consultation. Many counties have small claims advisers who can assist you for free.

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Answered on 12/02/15, 4:07 pm

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