Getting Sued by an Insurance Company for Subrogation

One of the frequent calls we get it is "help, I have been contacted or sued by lawyers from a car insurance company and they want me to pay for injuries or repairs relating to the car accident." 
At the bottom of the page we outline our subrogation defense solutions.There are two common subrogation scenarios:

1. The typical scenario is that you are involved in a car accident and are found to be at fault and have no liability insurance.

2. A less common scenario is that you had liability insurance but the injury to the other people was so bad that they used all of your liability coverage and then got money from their own underinsured motorist insurance to pay for the balance of the injuries. This can happen very easily with surgeries running in excess of $30,000 even for arthroscopic procedures. When this happens, the victim's underinsured motorist insurance will sometimes come after you personally for the balance.

Situation 1:
If you have liability insurance, then it is typically no big deal because your insurance will pay off the car repair debt to the other insurer or the other driver. When you dont....

Property Damage Subrogation

You caused a crash and had no valid insurance or not enough insurance to cover the damage (could be a high end car or multiple cars damaged) If you don't have insurance to cover the repairs, then the other driver turns to their uninsured motorist coverage to pick up the repair tab. When the driver does that, they subrogate their claim against you for your negligence to their insurance company. Some time later the insurance company will come after you seeking to get their money back. First you will receive collections letters and then if you do nothing, they will sue you for it.

So the question is, what do you do? If you did not cause the crash and have some decent evidence then it may make sense to fight them over it. Use witnesses and photographs. If the money they are suing for is large enough, it may be cost effective to hire a lawyer to defend you on the grounds that you did not cause the crash. Lawyers will cost around $250.00 an hour on average.

If it is pretty obvious you caused the crash, then this is like any other debt. They want to collect as much as possible, as soon as possible. You can enter into a repayment plan over time or try to scrounge up a portion of the amount owed as a lump sum. Just be sure to put in writing the purpose of any payments you make and what the agreement is.

Can the insurance company really sue me for this? Yes, they can. If it is clear you caused the crash, treat it as you would any other debt. Bankruptcy is an option and makes an effective threat to get the amount reduced.

Situation 2
Bodily Injury Subrogation

This situation used to be rare but is becoming more common. Here the other driver was injured and made a claim for the injury to their uninsured motorist coverage. This can arise because
  1. you had no insurance or
  2. the insurance you had was not enough to cover a serious injury. For example, in Georgia, many people have minimum limits insurance policies which only cover $25,000 in injury liability. If you break someone's leg and they have $45,000 dollar surgery, then if the victim's uninsured motorist coverage pays out, they may come after you. It is harder for them to prove their damages in the injury scenario, but again, if it is a significant claim, hire a lawyer to defend you.
In either scenario, do not just ignore the problem because it will not go away. If you receive legal papers, take them to a lawyer and figure out what it means. In Georgia, you only have 30 days to file your legal answer to a lawsuit after it is served (given to you or an adult roommate). If you fail to answer, you admit everything the lawsuit said and you can lose even when its unfair.

Our Solutions for People Facing Subrogation Suits

We can save you thousands of dollars in certain scenarios. Fill out the "Email Chris Directly"  form to the left, pasting the questionnaire below into the message section with your answers. If you can also email any letters you received from the subrogation entity, letters from your own insurance company and the police report, that will help.

Subrogation Questions

Who is contacting you about the claimed debt:

What insurance company is making the Subrogation claim:

Has a lawsuit been filed yet? (Have you been served with court papers?)

How much are they claiming?

Are they claiming for damage to vehicles or injury to people?

Who did the police officer write a ticket to?

Two sentence description of how the crash happened.\

Where do you live?

Do you have insurance and if so, with what company and in what amount?

Has your insurance already paid out it's limits?

Are you currently employed (this matters because they may eventually seek to garnish your wages)

We will respond within 24 hours with the options that are available to you.

Some insurers are more aggressive than others, like State Farm for instance. They will hound you to the ends of the earth. Remember this, the lawyers bringing those cases are not getting much out of them. Give them a reasonable offer or a payment plan and you have options. If you are getting sued for a substantial sum, consider bankruptcy or the threat of bankruptcy.
Client Reviews
My wife and I were hit by a tractor trailer in 2014. After extensive research online, we were deeply impressed with the various reviews we read on Google and Avvo and chose Chris to represent us. We could not have a made a better decision. Chris and his firm treated us like we were their only clients, soothed our worries, and instantly gained our trust. Chris settled both of our cases for more than we expected. James
A co-worker of my wife recommended Chris to us. At the very beginning Chris showed that he cared and his knowledge is priceless. Going through this process can be aggravating but Chris did a great job guiding me through this and was always available to answer my questions. Chris fought to get what I deserved even though at times I wanted to give up. Tracy
I want to express my deepest sense of gratitude and appreciation to Attorney Chris Simon & Attorney Chris Carsten, for all the hard work that they put forth into my case (car accident filed after being hit by drunk driver). Their attention to detail and professionalism far surpasses their firm's reputation. Because of their diligence and dedication to their craft, they were able to bring my case to a successful close, one that I could live with. You will not find a better team for your case. Should I have a need for their services again in the future, or know of anyone looking for a top notch Auto Accident Law Firm, I would not hesitate to recommend them!!!! Elle
Wow...Chris is a very good attorney. Me and my son was in a very bad car accident an I was clueless on how to handle the situation. It's very hard to find an attorney who allows you to contact them personally instead of you contacting their asst. I was told that I didn't have a case because the hosiptal put a lien on my acct. Chris prove different and I was able to file my case with the insurance company. The process was very quickly and Im glad I selected the right attorney..Thanks Chris A Car Accident client
Chris is a great lawyer and the most people friendly attorney I have ever delt with. He handled my case with great attention to detail and did so in a very short period of time. He is very consice, efficient, patient and understanding. He has a strong passion for what he does and he does it well. I recommend Chris Simon as legal representation for anyone who has suffreed damages or a loss at the negligence of others. He really cares about you and your case. A Car Accident client