Should you Accept the Insurance Company's First Offer?

Leesburg Florida car accident lawyer |No good deed goes unpunished

Posted by Guy DiMartino | Apr 20, 2014 | 0 Comments

Leesburg Florida car accident lawyer| No good deed goes unpunished

You receive a phone call from a family member.  They  need a new car and they can't get the financing.  You go with them to the dealer and the dealer tells you that you have to be on the title.

Let me tell you the story in this case.  A guy goes out with his soon to be ex-wife and purchases her a car.  He is put on the title.  His ex-wife lives in a different house, he doesn't have keys to the house or car, and never drives the car.  She goes out and buys insurance on the car. the ex-husband thinks everything is okay.  The ex-wife gets in an accident and kills somebody.  She did not have enough insurance to pay for the injuries and her  ex- husband gets sued.

You maybe saying to yourself is that right?  That's not his car!  It's clearly is ex-wife's car. In this case, it was clear that the car was not the ex husband's. He didn't drive the car, didn't have keys to the car, had no access to the garage or house where the car was kept.  The Florida Supreme Court said he was still the legal owner because he was on the title.

Florida is one of the only states that follows a doctrine called the dangerous instrumentality doctrine.  This doctrine holds the owner of a vehicle responsible for the negligent acts of the driver even though the owner had nothing to do with the crash. The ex-husband argued that the dangerous instrumentality doctrine doesn't apply to him.  The Supreme Court specifically stated:

That a person whose name is on the certificate of title of a vehicle as co-owner cannot avoid vicarious liability under the “beneficial ownership” or “naked legal title” exception to vicarious liability under the dangerous instrumentality doctrine.

The moral of the story is that if you chose to buy somebody a vehicle, make sure you have an extra layer of insurance to protect you if that person gets in a wreck.

The best and easiest way to learn all about the Florida car accident process is to download a free copy of my e-book A Guide to Florida Car Accident Claims or if you would like a hard copy of the book – just send me an email at guy@gsdimartino.com or give me a call (352) 267-9168 

About the Author

Guy DiMartino

I have loved helping people in need for almost three decades.  It has been my privilege to serve people as their pastor, chiropractor, and lawyer.  The current focus of my legal practice and life’s passion is helping the seriously injured receive complete compensation for their injuries. I am a Florida Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney. What that really means is that I am no stranger to the courtroom.  I have successfully tried and handled serious cases in state and federal courts.  My backgrounds in both law and chiropractic medicine have given me a unique perspective, extensive knowledge, and wide experience to serve those I represent. For years as a chiropractic physician, I treated my patients to alleviate their pain and suffering. Now as their lawyer, I fight to bring them financial compensation for their pain and suffering. During my years of service, I have handled many traumatic injury cases ranging from the traumatic amputation of a limb to brain and spinal cord injury.  I consider it an honor to serve you and your family. When a person entrusts me and I accept to represent them, I don’t take that relationship and responsibility lightly. My approach is that we work as a team. We are partners and our goal is the best outcome for you and your family with the highest level of communication throughout. I am always available by phone or email to discuss my potential representation of your injury case. I handle cases throughout Florida. Education: National University of Health Sciences – BS (1984), DC (1986) Valparaiso University School of Law – JD, summa cum laude (1999) Bar Admissions: Florida (2000), Indiana (1999), Illinois (2000, expired); US District Courts of Appeals (11th Circuit, 7th Circuit); United States District Courts: Southern and Middle Districts of Florida; Northern and Southern Districts of Indiana; Northern and Central Districts of Illinois; and District of Colorado. Certification:  Civil Trial, Florida Bar Guy DiMartino on Google+ – Circle Guy on Google+ Guy DiMartino on Google+

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