My fiancé had recently passed away and left me with a van I did not need, so I sent the van to his son. When I sent the van to his son, it stated had the insurance policy on it from my fiancé. The van was then involved in an accident, while my fiancé’s son’s girlfriend was driving. The accident was a total wreck for both vehicles involved. The insurance that I had on the van stated that they will not pay for any of the damages. The people in the other vehicle are now suing me directly, my fiancé’s son and his girlfriend. My insurance is stating that I never notified them about my boyfriend’s death, even though I told the agent within 2 to 3 days of him him passing. They also state that I am only listed as a driver and not the actual policyholder, so based on that they are also refusing to pay anything. The title to the van is under my fiancé’s name, not mine. We were never married. My fiancé died without leaving the will. I never cancel the insurance policy on the van, because it was paid for and my agent told me when I needed to do something he would contact me. What are my rights in this situation? Can I be sued by these people even though I wasn’t involved in the accident and the vehicle doesn’t belong to me?
First of all, you cannot be sued for an accident you were not involved in or the vehicle is not titled or registered under your name. The simple fact that you are on the insurance policy as a secondary driver, an insurance policy is not under your name keeps them from getting money from insurance. If you had been driving the van, then insurance would pay, but since you’re not a policyholder, the insurance company is not required to pay. Since the insurance company is stating that you never informed them of your fiancé’s death, that most likely will keep them from having to pay anything from this accident. Since the vehicle is not registered to you and not titled to you, you cannot be sued personally, simply because your fiancé puts you as a secondary driver. Since you are not married your fiancé and the vehicle wasn’t yours, you have absolutely no obligation to this motor vehicle accident. Now that being said, your fiancé’s son and his girlfriend are going to have to deal with the situation. More accurately, your fiancé son’s girlfriend, who was driving the vehicle at the time of the accident, will have to pay for this if it is found that she is more than 50% at fault for the accident.
Joseph F. Botelho, Esq.
BOTELHO LAW GROUP
Attorneys At Law
901 Eastern Ave.
Fall River, MA 02723
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