Visitor Question

Subrogate deductible amounts with same insurance company?

Submitted By: Randall (Springfield, Missouri)

This happened in Greene County, Missouri (rural Springfield) on April 18, 2018 about 7:00 p.m. The driver of a motor vehicle, a 1/2 ton pick up truck, lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a detached garage. The driver was transported from the scene by ambulance and hospitalized for two days. He had a head injury (35 stitches), broken ribs, concussion.

The police report (Missouri State Highway Patrol), completed several day later, states that the driver may have experienced a medical episode. There was extensive structural damage to the garage, garage door, and the walk thru door, siding, and window need to be replaced.

Both parties happen to have the same insurance company and both parties are charged a deductible. This cannot be subrogated because the driver suffered a medical episode.

Is it proper, or legal, that the owner of the garage be required to pay the deductible, and the claim be processed through his policy and not the policy of the vehicle operator?

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Randall,

The driver of the truck should be fully responsible for the damage to the garage. While a medical episode may explain the reason for the accident, nevertheless, the garage owner had no fault in the accident and resulting property damage.

Obtain a copy of the police report. It should have a description and diagram of the accident, and a determination of fault by the investigating officer. To obtain a copy of the police report, contact the Missouri State Highway Patrol and submit a request for the report.

The garage owner needs to file a claim with the driver’s insurance company (even though the garage owner has the same insurance company). Once filed, the insurance company will send a claims adjuster to the property to determine the damage, and the price of repairing such damage.

At that point, the only person who may have to pay a deductible should be the driver, and not the garage owner. However, if the garage owner does not want to wait for the claim to be processed through the driver’s insurance, the garage owner can file a claim through his or her own insurance. In that case, the driver may have to pay a deductible.

Learn more here: Liability in Injury Claims & Lawsuits

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck with your claim.

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