Who Pays For Damages When A Defendant Files For Bankruptcy In A Car Accident Lawsuit?
Dealing With Other Driver’s Insurance Company
Generally, when you are involved in a car accident and are forced to file suit against the other driver in your car accident, you are dealing with the other driver’s insurance company. In Texas, it is against the law to drive without insurance, so with that in mind, most, if not all, Texans have or should have some type of auto insurance.
Pursuing the Driver and Collecting from Defendant’s Assets
In rare cases where you have to pursue the driver of the other vehicle personally, collect the money awarded to you can be extremely difficult. You are limited to only collecting from the defendant’s assets, and if the defendant files for bankruptcy, collecting your money can be even more difficult.
Insurance Company of the Defendant Will Be Held Liable
As long as the other driver had a valid policy at the time of the accident, the other driver’s insurance company will be held liable for any damages awarded by the court. By law, the insurance company is required to represent the other driver and payout any damages that don’t exceed the driver’s policy limits.
Getting payment from the insurance company usually isn’t difficult. Once a judgment is signed, you can expect your check within a month or two minus attorney’s fees and medical expenses. However, getting paid from an individual driver can be difficult and take some time.
What Happens If the Other Driver Files For Bankruptcy?
If you are awarded $50,000 by the court and the driver’s policy only covers up to $30,000, then the driver is personally responsible to pay the excess $20,000. In this instance, your experienced car accident lawyer will have to pursue a suit against the defendant personally. Texas is one of the most difficult states to collect a judgment.
You are not allowed to go after the defendant’s wages, do a bank levy, and putting a lien against the defendant’s home is usually a waste of time. If the defendant files bankruptcy, it can be even harder to collect on your judgment because there is technically nothing left to go after.
Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
If a defendant does file bankruptcy in the middle of your case, it is important to call an experienced car accident lawyer. They will look to see if there are other defendants you could possibly sue to cover your damages and medical expenses, or any other options you may have.
Either way, handling a situation such as bankruptcy is not one you want to handle yourself. Call 713-524-8139 or go online to set up a time to speak with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer at Our Law Firm.