Legal Question in Traffic Law in Georgia

was involved in a minor accident in which to aviod hitting a car that cut me off I scraped the passengers door side of the car in the next lane. Myself and the driver of the car I scraped both agreed not to call the police. He said that it looked like a simple scratch. This driver and I agreed that he would get an estimate and I would pay for it. We then both exchanged our information and he said that he would call me. When he did call he said his body shop said the axle was damaged and that the total cost of repair is $3000.00 I know and the other driver agreed at the time that only the door was scraped. I was told that they are trying to rip me off, and since The cops weren't called that there is no proof of an accident and I can simply walk away. I'm willing to pay for the damage I caused, but no extra. Can I walk away from this ?

Asked on 9/04/13, 5:07 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Scott Riddle Law Office of Scott B. Riddle, LLC

You are liable for all the damage you caused, whatever it may be, and if you walk away you will probably get sued.

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Answered on 9/04/13, 5:10 pm

Glen Ashman Ashman Law Office

Frankly, you acted very foolishly at the time, and you are now planning to make it even worse. You NEVER (let me stress NEVER) leave an accident before calling police and waiting for them. That always goes badly. Please understand this is serious, and you have already made a simple matter far worse than it needed to be.

Second, you're at fault. You have made it worse by breaching your contract with your insurance company (foolish mistake number two) which requires you to report all accidents. In exchange they agree to defend you, provide legal counsel and pay damages. Call them now (like now - not tommorow or soon - NOW). Pray that they still cover you. If they do, they will deal with the damage claims and defend or pay them.

Third foolish move you made - negotiating with the other party (again a violation of your car insurance policy). STOP talking to them.

Fourth foolish mistake you are about to make - pretending this didn't happen. When you get sued and lose, your driver's license can be suspended for life (until you pay the damages in full).

Stop making this worse, call your insurer, report the claim, and pray you have not outsmarted yourself. In the future, call the police to every accident, and call your insurer within minutes of an accident. I am guessing you also made mistake number five (one your insurance company told you about in their materials) - taking pictures of the damages at the scene.

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Answered on 9/04/13, 5:54 pm

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