Can I get the front of my car fixed if the front driver I hit cannot be contacted?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Can I get the front of my car fixed if the front driver I hit cannot be contacted?

I got in a rear-end accident. A truck hit me and then pushed me into the car in front of me. My car is currently in the shop getting the back fixed but the insurance company says they can’t fix the front until they confirm with the driver who was ahead of me that I was hit due to being pushed into them. With that being said, they have not been able to get in contact with the driver of the car that I hit because no phone number was collected at the scene of the accident. I think they’re giving me the runaround and I would like to get the front of my car fixed.

Asked on June 16, 2016 under Accident Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Ask the insurer if you can pay out of pocket for the front end repairs while the claim is being investigated, so that the repair cost will be reimbursed after they have everything theyneed. There is a very good chance they will agree (if so, get it in writing), in which case this is the most expeditious, least costly (i.e. no lawsuit) way to proceed.
If they don't agree but you can afford yo pay for the repairs and need your car, you can pay to repair then later, if necessary, sue the insurer for breach of contract (not paying what they should pay under the policy, which is a contract) for reimbursement.
If you can't afford the repairs your only recourse would be to sue now for breach of contract to try to get them to pick up the repair cost. You would likely need to sue on an urgent or "emergent" basis to get a resolution in weeks, not months.

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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