The Insurer Can Be Wrong
Q: Our car was struck by one of two vehicles. Each of the drivers has said, “We were having a speed fight.” The insurers for the drivers say that, in case of a speed contest, the policies exclude liability.
A: A savvy lawyer can often make a great case for you, even when some insurer tells you otherwise. Perhaps, the policy does not define the term ‘speed contest’. In the only other source of a definition, the Vehicle and Traffic Law, perhaps the term does not encompass the conduct in which these drivers actually engaged.
Seemingly, it would not be enough that an automobile operated by one driver and another by his friend left an intersection abreast, when the traffic light changed to green, and thereafter traveled abreast at an elevated speed, each car jockeying for position.
Merely speeding down the street, even in tandem with another vehicle, does not constitute a speed contest within the meaning of the New York statute. Violation of the statute generally means that some race course must have been planned by the competitors along a street. If the two drivers had not planned-out a race course, you may well have an excellent case for reaching the insurance proceeds.
Take this case to a lawyer. Don’t take the insurer’s word for it.
By: Scott Baron,
Attorney at Law Advertorial
The law responds to changed conditions; exceptions and variations abound. Here, the information is general; always seek out competent counsel. This article shall not be construed as legal advice.
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