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Complaint 9 of 20 in "Fault and No-Fault Issues"

Insurance Carrier: Allstate
State: Illinois

Consumer Complaint:

My son was driving on a main steet when he was struck by a car crossing the street directly into his passenger door. The police report clearly states this. The insurance company is trying to put 100% blame on my son, saying he was driving too fast for conditions, although he was driving under the speed limit on the main steet. It was salted and he had his 4-wheel drive on as well. Note they established liability and they still haven't even looked at the car yet.

Insurance Expert Answer:

Any accident involves questions of fact. I was not there, you were not there, and the policeman probably was not there to witness the accident. The drivers and any other witnesses typically each have their own version of reality. However, as a father I know that new drivers (assuming your son is young) are always looked at with extra suspicion and more often than not are at least partly at fault. Merely going under the speed limit in inclement weather with a 4 wheel drive does not mean he still was not going faster than appropriate for the weather and road conditions. Yet I also know Allstate has been claiming partial fault all the time to reduce its share of the losses. It's a horrible company to fight against and is recognized as the worst by the American Association for Justice which primarily consists of the Plaintiff's bar. If you have collision insurance let your carrier pay for the damages, less the deductible, and it then will go after the other driver's company and the 2 companies will sort it all out. If they conclude the other driver was fully at fault, or your son was less at fault that Allstate now claims, you'll get some or all of the deductible back and save yourself a lot of hassle. If you didn't have collision insurance, and Allstate is the other driver's carrier, it's going to be almost impossible to convince them your son was not at least partially at fault. The only way you'll fully win this one is to sue the other driver in small claims court and win. Or if your son was injured, and you get a lawyer so that Allstate recognizes it has something significant to lose, they'd likely pay the repair damages to avoid the potentially much larger personal injury damages.