Los Angeles has the most auto thefts per year of any city in the U.S. with 53,000. This makes sense because of the number of high-value cars and the high population. So what happens when someone gets injured from an accident with a stolen vehicle? Can they sue the driver? What about the owner of the car?

Stolen SUV hits car head-on in Palmdale

A man driving an allegedly stolen SUV crashed into a sedan on Tuesday, January 7, 2019, around 10 p.m. in Palmdale. According to the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Office, the accident happened when the driver of a GMC Yukon crossed over the centerline of 50th Street just north of Palmdale Dr. and struck a Nissan Sentra head-on.

Both drivers were trapped and had to rescued by the EMS workers, and the driver was arrested for driving under the influence and grand theft auto.

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Stolen Vehicles and Liability

If you are hurt by someone’s negligence, California law allows you to seek damages from the person who injured you. This is true in all cases of negligence including when a person steals a vehicle and hits someone.

The problem for the injured victim is that most car thieves don’t have auto insurance, and even if they did, the insurance company isn’t going to cover for their damages when they are stealing a car. To make matters worse for the victim, the car owner’s insurance won’t cover the damages either because the owner wasn’t negligent.

The reason someone gets car insurance is so that if they hit someone else and injure them, then the insurance will pay so long as the driver was negligent.

Is the Victim out of Luck?

What happens if someone else was driving your car, when a car gets into a collision, who can you sue for your injury claim? There is a couple of possibilities where the victim might be able to get compensation for their injuries. The first is if the injured victim can prove that the owner was somehow negligent in the theft of the vehicle. This is almost impossible to prove as the law will typically see injuries caused by an accident with a stolen vehicle as unforeseeable by the owner of the car.

However, this could change over time as many states are passing laws that create liability for owners who leave their keys in their car or leave it running while they run into a store.

The second way for a victim to get compensation from injuries caused by a stolen vehicle is to make a claim against their own auto insurance. If they have an uninsured and underinsured provision on their auto policy, then their own insurance company might have to pay for their damages because the injuries occurred because of an auto accident.

Uninsured and underinsured coverage pays the owner of the policy for any damages they incur due to someone else’s negligence where there is no coverage or too little coverage so long as the injuries occurred in an auto accident.

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Allen Vaysberg Los Angeles Auto Accident Lawyer

Contact an Auto Accident Attorney

The best thing to do when injured in an automobile accident is to talk to a Los Angeles Car Accident Attorney who understands the law and has experience getting injured victims the compensation they deserve.

Call the Law Offices of Steers & Associates at 800 824 5416 or click here to contact us online. We have attorneys with years of experience dealing with every type of motor vehicle accident, and we get results against the insurance companies and their highly-paid lawyers. Call us now to even the playing field and get the compensation you deserve.