Legal Question in Personal Injury in Oklahoma

My husband was involved in an accident while driving a friend's car. Another driver was driving recklessly and he tried to get away from that and in the process essentially scratched another vehicle. The reckless driver fled the scene. My husband was not ticketed. The insurance company covering the friend's car did an investigation and found the other driver and sent a letter stating that my husband was not at fault. He was served yesterday with a notice of lawsuit by the driver that he hit. The lawsuit is for $75,000. What can we do? Can we be sued if the insurance says it wasn't his fault?

Asked on 1/14/15, 4:06 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Paul Kouri Travis Law Office

The insurance company's decision about "fault" does not bind any of the parties to a wreck. Under the facts you describe, it is at least feasible there may be some percentage of fault on your husband. Ultimately, it is for a jury to decide who is at fault. So, yes, your husband can be sued even though an insurance company said he was not at fault. That said, though, part of the coverage you purchase on your auto insurance policy is that your insurance company will defend you in lawsuits such as this and pay any settlement or judgment that results, up to your policy limits. They also have a duty to get you a "release of liability" if they pay any amount to the other party. You need to get the lawsuit papers to your auto insurance company right away. You should then, after they have time to evaluate the claim, request that they pay the claim and get your husband a "release." As for the $75,000--in Oklahoma we have to file such claims "in an amount greater than," or "in an amount less than" $75,000. That just means they think the lawsuit is at least potentially less than or greater than that amount, but it is not really the same as demanding that amount.

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Answered on 1/15/15, 8:44 am

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