What to do if my sister was in an accident driving my uninsured car and she was at fault but now their garnishing my checks, as well as hers?

UPDATED: May 3, 2014

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What to do if my sister was in an accident driving my uninsured car and she was at fault but now their garnishing my checks, as well as hers?

I was not in the car at the the time of accident. Is this legal and, if so, how can I get the amount they take every check reduced? I’m a single mother of 2.

Asked on May 3, 2014 under Bankruptcy Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

It doesn't matter if you were in the car or not: the owner of a car is equally liable with any person whom she permits to drive it (that is, you are responsible for the accident, too, because you let your sister drive). The injured party or their insurer can decide whether to go against the driver, the car's owner, or both. Not having insurance to pay them, they can proceed against your income (i.e. garnish it). If they are taking more than is allowed by law, you can get the garnishment reduced; this is not a simply process, and even figuring out how much they can legally take is not always straightforward, so you are advised to consult with an attorney. You also could sue your sister to recover some or all of what is taken for you, since it was her fault that you are having wages garnished; you can discuss this with your lawyer.

In the future, do not have a car without insurance; the insurance requirement is not just to protect others, it is also to protect you from being economically damaged or ruined.

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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption