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  1. #1

    Default Not-at-fault accident while excluded from owner's insurance policy

    Hello,

    On August 21 I was leaving my first day at a new job in which I needed to drive my Mom's car. I had always been exempted on her vehicle, however since I got the job she was going to add me to the insurance so I could continue to get myself to and fro.

    I came to a full stop at the T intersection shown here and looked both ways; clear. As I inched forward to increase my field of vision I, and no sooner than I was a few feet in the southbound lane, saw and heard a black car skidding to smash right into the front left of my car. The police report states a skid mark reading of 58.7 feet. Not to claim to be a physicist or professional by any means, but I merely plugged in simple variables to the skid mark distance to velocity equation found here to determine that he was going approximately, and minimally 67 MPH. The small, two-lane business/residential street lined on both sides with parked cars has a speed limit of 25 MPH. Furthermore, in reenacting the accident in a friend's car, I had no problem stopping within 10 feet with no skid marks while driving at just above 25 MPH.

    His car didn't have plates and his insurance card stated the beginning of the policy to be two weeks prior. It was a brand new '06 Nissan Altima. He was 20 and driving with two friends. Several times the driver mentioned that he was angry that he couldn't get to lunch and that if he had known the correct directions to Burger King he would have actually needed to make a right onto the street in which I had stopped.

    The police report claims we are both at 50%/50% fault; me for failing to yield and him for driving in excess of the speed limit. His claim in the report is that he was going 25-30 MPH.

    My mother has since had to state on recording to her insurance carrier that she acknowledges that they will not represent the claim. The other driver's carrier took a recorded statement from me as well. Afterwards she told me that so far she has little evidence to show her client is at any fault. Now I'm looking at no cooperation from my mom's carrier, a suspended license?, a totalled car, and a single mother who has since made me feel so guilty for involving her in this..

    I am at a complete loss for not only is my life going to be so dramatically affected by this situtation (suspended license means no job and a struggle to get to school - full time) but I can't believe that the other driver might get away scott free with blatantly lying to the officer at the scene.

    Needless to say my Mom can't help and I (21 years old) must fix this somehow myself. Any help would be ever so gracious.

    I live close to Pasadena, California if it helps.

    Thanks,
    Angelo

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Northern California
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    252

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    Quote Quoting angelogladding
    View Post
    Hello,

    On August 21 I was leaving my first day at a new job in which I needed to drive my Mom's car. I had always been exempted on her vehicle, however since I got the job she was going to add me to the insurance so I could continue to get myself to and fro.

    I came to a full stop at the T intersection shown here and looked both ways; clear. As I inched forward to increase my field of vision I, and no sooner than I was a few feet in the southbound lane, saw and heard a black car skidding to smash right into the front left of my car. The police report states a skid mark reading of 58.7 feet. Not to claim to be a physicist or professional by any means, but I merely plugged in simple variables to the skid mark distance to velocity equation found here to determine that he was going approximately, and minimally 67 MPH. The small, two-lane business/residential street lined on both sides with parked cars has a speed limit of 25 MPH. Furthermore, in reenacting the accident in a friend's car, I had no problem stopping within 10 feet with no skid marks while driving at just above 25 MPH.

    His car didn't have plates and his insurance card stated the beginning of the policy to be two weeks prior. It was a brand new '06 Nissan Altima. He was 20 and driving with two friends. Several times the driver mentioned that he was angry that he couldn't get to lunch and that if he had known the correct directions to Burger King he would have actually needed to make a right onto the street in which I had stopped.

    The police report claims we are both at 50%/50% fault; me for failing to yield and him for driving in excess of the speed limit. His claim in the report is that he was going 25-30 MPH.

    My mother has since had to state on recording to her insurance carrier that she acknowledges that they will not represent the claim. The other driver's carrier took a recorded statement from me as well. Afterwards she told me that so far she has little evidence to show her client is at any fault. Now I'm looking at no cooperation from my mom's carrier, a suspended license?, a totalled car, and a single mother who has since made me feel so guilty for involving her in this..

    I am at a complete loss for not only is my life going to be so dramatically affected by this situtation (suspended license means no job and a struggle to get to school - full time) but I can't believe that the other driver might get away scott free with blatantly lying to the officer at the scene.

    Needless to say my Mom can't help and I (21 years old) must fix this somehow myself. Any help would be ever so gracious.

    I live close to Pasadena, California if it helps.

    Thanks,
    Angelo
    There is nothing that can be done to help you. You're financially stuck. And, it would serve no purpose to go over the entire laundry list of things both you and your mother did wrong.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    not sure
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    526

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    If you were an excluded driver and the insurance is not valid because of this, would that be considered driving without insurance? Were there any tickets given?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    There is nothing that can be done to help you. You're financially stuck. And, it would serve no purpose to go over the entire laundry list of things both you and your mother did wrong.
    Clair, not quite the response I was expecting but if you don't mind I'd appreciate the laundry list. Should my Mom not have gone on recording acknowledging her carrier was to hold no responsibility? Is there a possibility for taking this to small claims court with the evidence in the police report? Is there truly nothing that can be done to help me in this situation?

  5. #5

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    cissycicle, there were no tickets issued for I was carrying my Mom's insurance card on me. I was under the impression that the exempt status on the insurance policy was not so severe and that bearing the card alone and the car being insured itself had a higher priority.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,594

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    Quote Quoting angelogladding
    As I inched forward to increase my field of vision I, and no sooner than I was a few feet in the southbound lane, saw and heard a black car skidding to smash right into the front left of my car.
    Uh oh ... not good for you so far.

    The police report states a skid mark reading of 58.7 feet. Not to claim to be a physicist or professional by any means, but I merely plugged in simple variables to the skid mark distance to velocity equation found here to determine that he was going approximately, and minimally 67 MPH.
    I am not going to go back and ask you to show your work, but adding the coefficient of friction to the equation a 58.7 foot skid will indicate in a speed of approximately 36 to 38 MPH at the start of the skid. However, the speed could be higher depending on the presence of ABS in the braking vehicle and its application by the driver.

    In any event, his speed is not likely to absolve you of your responsibility to yield to oncoming traffic as required by law.

    Thus far, you would seem to be at fault as I see a stop sign limit line controlling access to the north-south roadway (per your linked map and picture of the intersection).

    His car didn't have plates and his insurance card stated the beginning of the policy to be two weeks prior. It was a brand new '06 Nissan Altima.
    Okay. So it was a new car and he was insured. At least HE was insured.

    He was 20 and driving with two friends. Several times the driver mentioned that he was angry that he couldn't get to lunch and that if he had known the correct directions to Burger King he would have actually needed to make a right onto the street in which I had stopped.
    How is this relevant?

    The police report claims we are both at 50%/50% fault; me for failing to yield and him for driving in excess of the speed limit. His claim in the report is that he was going 25-30 MPH.
    How does the report claim you each at 50-50 fault? Our collision reports are not written like that. ONE person is assigned a Primary Collision Factor (the PCF) and this can be found in the upper left hand corner of page 2 of the CHP 555 - it will list the party number and the Vehicle Code section used for the PCF. There is a place for "Associated Factors" elsewhere on page 2 as well as an explanation in the narrative and these might infer a 50-50 split.

    However, the DMV will use the party number and CVC section for the PCF to determine who gets the point on their license as being the party "most at fault" (and the requisite insurance hike).

    Now I'm looking at no cooperation from my mom's carrier, a suspended license?
    Why would your license be suspended? A suspension might be possible due to the failure to show insurance, but it depends on other factors.

    Were you also cited for the crash?

    a totalled car, and a single mother who has since made me feel so guilty for involving her in this..
    Next time, drive AFTER you are covered under her insurance.

    I can't believe that the other driver might get away scott free with blatantly lying to the officer at the scene.
    What did he lie about? The speed was likely about 38 MPH based upon the skid marks. He underestimated his speed ... almost everyone does.

    It will help to know what the PCF says ... I'm gonna guess it lists your party number as the party at fault and the section as CVC 21802(a)? Some officer MIGHT list this as CVC 22106 ... I wouldn't.

    Oh, as an FYI I have conducted some 600+ traffic collision investigations as a cop in CA.

    - Carl

  7. #7

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    I am not going to go back and ask you to show your work, but adding the coefficient of friction to the equation a 58.7 foot skid will indicate in a speed of approximately 36 to 38 MPH at the start of the skid. However, the speed could be higher depending on the presence of ABS in the braking vehicle and its application by the driver.
    I had used a mu of .72 but neglected to convert 58.7 m to ft. Thanks for pointing that out.

    I still don't see how travelling 30 MPH in a friend's car on the same surface the following day allowed for immediate stopping with no skid marks far, far ahead of the intersection in which we collided.

    Furthermore, might you be able to explain how the ABS affects stopping potential before the skid marks as well as how the vehicle damage is coupled with the skid mark velocity determination?

    Okay. So it was a new car and he was insured. At least HE was insured.
    I was guilty of not being properly insured. I understand this and am willing to reap any repercussions for doing so. I am insured now and have learned the lesson that all it takes is one drive for something to go wrong.. The reason to mention it was a new car also helps describe the situation, particularly that the car indeed has ABS and that the breaks should be in top condition.

    Quote:
    He was 20 and driving with two friends. Several times the driver mentioned that he was angry that he couldn't get to lunch and that if he had known the correct directions to Burger King he would have actually needed to make a right onto the street in which I had stopped.

    How is this relevant?
    It shows that he was unfamiliar with the area; a good reason to be driving at, not above, the speed limit. The age doesn't matter at all. His immaturity at the scene was what really got to me.. That part is not relevant. Excuse me.

    How does the report claim you each at 50-50 fault? Our collision reports are not written like that. ONE person is assigned a Primary Collision Factor (the PCF) and this can be found in the upper left hand corner of page 2 of the CHP 555 - it will list the party number and the Vehicle Code section used for the PCF. There is a place for "Associated Factors" elsewhere on page 2 as well as an explanation in the narrative and these might infer a 50-50 split.

    However, the DMV will use the party number and CVC section for the PCF to determine who gets the point on their license as being the party "most at fault" (and the requisite insurance hike).
    Look at all of that jargon from my position for a moment and you'll see that a police report might be a bit difficult to interpret at first glance. The report specifically stated that we were both in, what seemed to be, equal(?) violations.

    Why would your license be suspended? A suspension might be possible due to the failure to show insurance, but it depends on other factors.

    Were you also cited for the crash?
    I was not cited for the crash or cited for anything for that matter but I am getting poor advice across the spectrum from family and friends it seems. My Dad works as an insurance agent/rep and has told me that I'm going to get my license taken away for 6 months. I trusted him naively. I have little resources to turn to.. Thank you, by the way, for all of your help.

    Next time, drive AFTER you are covered under her insurance.
    Without a doubt.

    What did he lie about? The speed was likely about 38 MPH based upon the skid marks. He underestimated his speed ... almost everyone does.
    I have never seen a skid quite like that. Not when personally driving or driving in another car during similar situations. As I mentioned above I am really interested to hear any information regarding speed determinations above and beyond the skid marks themselves (e.g. breaking before skid and collision damage)

    It will help to know what the PCF says ... I'm gonna guess it lists your party number as the party at fault and the section as CVC 21802(a)? Some officer MIGHT list this as CVC 22106 ... I wouldn't.
    I don't have the report handy but I will advise.

    Oh, as an FYI I have conducted some 600+ traffic collision investigations as a cop in CA.
    Thank you again for coming to these boards to try to help those in need.

    Angelo

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    Quote Quoting angelogladding
    View Post
    cissycicle, there were no tickets issued for I was carrying my Mom's insurance card on me. I was under the impression that the exempt status on the insurance policy was not so severe and that bearing the card alone and the car being insured itself had a higher priority.
    Is it noted on the insurance certificate that you are an excluded driver? Will this wreck justify cancellation? Why would your license be suspended if you weren't cited?

  9. #9

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    I had used a mu of .72 but neglected to convert 58.7 m to ft.
    What I meant to say was 58.7 ft to m.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Not-at-fault accident while exempted on Mom's policy in CA

    cissycicle, No it is not noted that I am an excluded driver on my insurance certificate. My Mom's carrier, after hearing of the accident, added me directly to the policy. Therefore, I can't imagine them objecting to it. As per cdwjava's reply, it seems I might not neccessarily have my license suspended.

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