Am I liable for a mailbox damage if it extends into the road 6″?

UPDATED: Jan 2, 2012

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Am I liable for a mailbox damage if it extends into the road 6″?

I knocked down just the mailbox not post but I did not leave the road or go up on the curb. It damaged my side view mirror. Am I liable for the mailbox or are they liable for the mirror?

Asked on January 2, 2012 under Accident Law, Ohio


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You are liable for the damage to the mailbox which would include the cost of repairs or replacement with a new mailbox.

You can refer the matter to your auto insurance company and the company will handle it for you.  If it is not much of an expense, you might want to consider just paying for it without dealing with the insurance company and a possible future rate increase.

If the case is not resolved by the owner of the mailbox with you or your insurance company, the owner could file a lawsuit in Small Claims Court against you for negligence.  The owner's damages (the amount of compensation the owner is seeking to recover in the lawsuit) would be the cost of repair or replacement of the mailbox.  The owner has to mitigate (minimize) damages by having the mailbox repaired or replaced at reasonable cost.  If the owner selected the most expensive place for repairs or purchased an expensive mailbox not comparable to the damaged one, the owner would have failed to mitigate damages and the owner's damages would be reduced accordingly. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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