do I have a case to sue? and where do I find a lawyer?

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do I have a case to sue? and where do I find a lawyer?

while at a concert at the new york state fair grounds yesterday i came
out of the concert after it ended to the brown area parking lot to
find a paper under my windshield wiper stating my back right passenger
door was damaged in an incident with a deputy’s name and number on it.
i flagged down a sheriff to find out that a boyfriend and girlfriend
had gotten into a fight and the boyfriend slammed her hear into my car
door and split her skull. My car is still drivable, but there’s a
giant dent in the door along with the window pain bent back and paint
damage. my question is do i have a case to sue him with for the
damage? my insurance will not cover this and i feel that I should not
have to pay out of my pocket for damages that I did not make to my
car.

Asked on July 8, 2016 under Accident Law, New York

Answers:

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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If you have comprehensive coverage on your auto insurance policy, you might want to try contacting your insurance company again and asking if this incident would be covered under comprehensive. If the damage to your car is considered to be an intentional act, it won't be covered under your insurance because auto insurance covers negligent not intentional acts.
You can sue the boyfriend for the cost of repairs to your car.  If it is construed as an intentional act since he was beating his girlfriend and slammed her into your car, you would sue for trespass to chattel which is the intentional taking or damaging of the personal property of another.
If the damage to your car is construed as negligence and not intentional, then you would sue the boyfriend for negligence.  Again, your damages would be the cost of repairs to your car.
You can file the lawsuit in Small Claims Court.  Your damages should include the cost of repairs to your car and court costs which would include the court filing fee and process server fee.
If you file your lawsuit in Small Claims Court, there aren't any attorneys.
If you retain an attorney and file the lawsuit in Superior Court (which might have a different name in your state), the attorney's fee will come out of the cost of repairs to your car.  Therefore, since the damage is probably an amount within the jurisdiction of Small Claims Court, it would be advisable to file your lawsuit in Small Claims Court.  There should be a legal adviser in Small Claims Court to help you complete the court forms and file your lawsuit.
If you still want to find an attorney and file in Superior Court, you can find attorneys online, in the Yellow Pages or can obtain a referral from your County Bar Association.
 


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