If an insurance company denies my 3rd party claim, do I have other choices other than take the driver to small claims?

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If an insurance company denies my 3rd party claim, do I have other choices other than take the driver to small claims?

Was in accident; damage was very minimal. I filed a 3rd party claim but they are denying responsibility. I feel the location of damage to my car is proof enough that I am not at fault. I asked about mediation or arbitration, and they said since the driver said I’m at fault, they have no choice but to deny my claim. I have no witnesses or police report, unfortunately.

Asked on January 6, 2012 under Accident Law, Colorado

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The only way to require someone whom you believe to be at fault in causing an accident to pay for  the damage he or she does is by suing. Often, if the fault is clear, that person's insurer may choose to pay, rather than fighting (and paying for) a lawsuit which it believes it will lose anyway. But if they believe that fault is not clear (or even more, that you were at fault) you can't make them pay--or agree to mediation or arbitration; all you can do is sue and seek to establish liability in court.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The only way to require someone whom you believe to be at fault in causing an accident to pay for  the damage he or she does is by suing. Often, if the fault is clear, that person's insurer may choose to pay, rather than fighting (and paying for) a lawsuit which it believes it will lose anyway. But if they believe that fault is not clear (or even more, that you were at fault) you can't make them pay--or agree to mediation or arbitration; all you can do is sue and seek to establish liability in court.


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