What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Florida
I am a new member here and I would like to thank all the helping members and the admin of this forum for their great work and service to fellow members.
My wife went through an accident (other party is at fault) four weeks ago. There are both property damage (car got totalled) and also personal injury. First I am dealing with the property damage issue. The opposite party's insurance sent us the property release forms (after we agreed on the car value). I have following questions before we blindly sign the forms and send to them.
1. Should we wait until we are ready to settle personal injury and then do both property damage and personal injury at the same time ? Or can I settle property damage independently of personal injury ?
2. If I want to get the property damage settled first, I want to make sure I am not signing everything they send blindly. They sent the following documents for me to sign:
(i) Bill of sale (it seems like a sale document from us to the insurance company and to be notarized as well)
(ii) Property damage release - this has all sorts of legal wording on it that I want to be careful before signing. Just want to know is it normal. It has wording like "release, acquit and forever discharge from any and all claims, actions, causes of action, demands, rights, damages,costs, loss of service, expenses and compensation whatsoever ... It is understood and agreed that this settlement is the compromise of a doubtful and disputed claim and that the payment is not be construed as an admission of liability on the part of the party .. said release intend merely to avoid litigation and buy peace. This document needs to be signed and notarized as well.
(iii)Motor vehicle Power of Attorney/Odometer disclosure form
(iv)Also asking us to enclose the vehicle's title
3. Only after receiving the above documents they say they will send the cheque to me.
So, is this procedure normal ? Is there anything I need to be worried about ? They paid for the rental car until we agreed on the price and they stopped paying after that. I have returned the rental car as I dont want to pay out of my pocket. I bought another equivalent car from a dealer and asked them to pay for it but they refused saying that they will only pay for what my car is worth. I tried to explain I just could not find exact same car but they are not budging saying they are liable only for what my car is worth.
Personal injury is another story.. i need to do a research on that but just want to deal with car first. What a nightmare ... one to deal with the accident and another to deal with insurance company. Hope you guys are all safe on the road. Thanks for listening and many advance thanks for your help.