What should I do about my family wanting more money?

  • by Trisha
  • Jan 16,2017
  • 16 answers

My nephew came over to help my husband build a garage. He fell off the ladder and broke his arm requiring surgery. We filed a claim with our house insurance and they gave him a thousand dollars. His mother wants us to give him another 1500 for medical bills because a lawyer told them they can't get anymore money out of the house insurance and to talk to the homeowners. I feel we have fulfilled our obligation by going through our house insurance and we don't have $1500 just sitting around. What do you suggest?


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Insurance Answers (16)

DON W 5 months ago

Is your nephew a nice kid who you want to stay on good terms with? Does his family have uncovered medical bills they can show you? If so, even though I agree with the others that you are not legally liable, I'd help out the nephew by giving the extra money--just make sure you get a signed letter from him and his family that the payment does not admit any fault on your part.

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A Yahoo! user 5 months ago

I agree with Lucy's answer. Everything she says is correct.
There could be a question of liability. Who caused this accident to happen? Was this the nephew's own fault for being careless? Or did you or a family member cause him to fall? Did your husband agree to hold the ladder steady, but instead he walked away? We have no details to make a liability assessment.
Who provided the ladder? If this was a ladder that you owned, then you are responsible for the safe condition of the ladder. If the ladder was in poor repair, and you provided the ladder, then you could be legally responsible for causing the accident. Again, we do not have enough facts to reach any conclusion here.
It is telling that your nephew has already contacted an attorney. Apparently your nephew has no qualms about suing his aunt and uncle. (That's a bit disgusting.)
But it is also telling that the attorney declined to take the case. Or at least that is what it sounds like. If the attorney did not see any basis to collect money from you or your insurance company, then he doesn't want to waste his time on it. The attorney can decline to take the case.
If you did nothing wrong to cause this, then you are NOT legally liable. Even if the case went to court, the jury would award ZERO dollars.
Based on what we understand about this case, you do not owe anything.
If any further claims are being made, just refer them to your homeowners insurance company. They will take care of it by either hiring an attorney, at their expense, to defend you, or paying the claim.
Do not voluntarily pay any money. You do not owe any money. Just refer any requests to your insurance company.
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babyboomer1001 5 months ago

I agree, your obligation is finished. They should have submitted the bills to the insurance company BEFORE they agreed to settle for $1,000. The insurance company would have paid more given the whole picture. They paid what they felt the case was worth, based on the information given to them - including all medical bills. Without a suitable demand letter, including the facts, ALL of the medical bills, and possible future residuals, they basically screwed themselves. It is their fault that they only got $1,000. Insurance companies do not renegotiate settlements.

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tro 5 months ago

it is unusual that the insurance company would not cover all his medical costs
if they paid $1K that should have taken care of all his needs, can she provide the bills for the additional $1500, sounds like the original care was not adequate
but you are responsible for the full coverage of his injury

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Insurance Pickle.com 5 months ago

Does your nephew want to sue you?

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coraann 5 months ago

He can use the $1000.for the medical bills.

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Linda R 5 months ago

Really? The kid is FAMILY! If you can't pay the entire $1,500.....at least pay half!

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Maris 5 months ago

Hello everyone i'm Maris Rooney i just want to testified on how i got a loan from a God fearing woman called Mrs Elizabeth pls do not fall in the hand of scan contact Mrs Elizabeth and get your Loan Via mail{elizabethperryloancompany@gmail.com...

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Casey Y 5 months ago

You are liable here for the injuries and their lawyer is right to sue you. It may be family, but they were injured while helping you out...so you are responsible for their injuries.
Whether your homeowners insurance company will pay will depend on specific information (your state would be helpful here) on the location and policy type.

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lucy 5 months ago

Your homeowner's insurance has a $1,000 medical payment coverage, that pays if someone on your property is injured, (at fault or not at fault). So your insurance paid the $1,000 and is closed, since that is the max on your policy.
Breaking his arm and requiring surgery would cost much more than $2,500, but my guess around $10,000. My guess is that the $2,500 is the deductible or co-pays they paid under their health insurance, thus wanting paid back.
Now, the only way they can get more from you, would be to sue you, and if they did, then your insurance must provide a lawyer for free to defend you. Now if they did and won, then your homeowners insurance would owe them (reimbursement) of all medical bills and then they would add pain/suffering.
But to sue, they must show that you the homeowner was negligent, which appears that your insurance through their investigation has determined, you are not.
The fact that they went to a lawyer and was told that no more from your insurance under medical payment coverage and to ask you personally to pay them back, "implies" that the lawyer told them that they would not prevail if they tried to sue you.
They can ask, but you are under no obligation to pay them. But, guessing in the future, will limit your relationship with them.

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Adam 5 months ago

Sounds like he got paid via "medical payments" portion from your insurance policy. He could sue you and your liability portion of your policy would then kick in and your insurance company would defend you and pay any claims up to the policy maximum.

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Tj 5 months ago

tell the lawyer to go after your insurance company

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Josh 5 months ago

Sounds like they are trying to take advantage...

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exactduke 5 months ago

He 'crashed & burned' on your property, helping you, on your ladder. Sounds to me, like you are 100% liable for any & all his medical expenses. What does your insurance agent say??

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Barkley 5 months ago

"...they gave him a thousand dollars...."
Clearly your homeowners insurance coverage for Liability (medical payments to others + personal liability) is inadequate. Review your policy limits and make changes or have the error in payment be corrected immediately. Otherwise, Negotiate or Pay.
They could sue and not only would you damage family relationships but you may (in the worst case) lose your property.

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taismith 5 months ago

Depends on the state that you live in and your insurance policy. Where I live, if there is no general contractor, the general contractor by default is the homeowner. Since that is the case here, if you were where I live, you'd be successfully sued for medical bills and any long term effects it might have on his employability or future employability.
Keep in mind that if you do pay up (however you get the money for it), I have a hunch that she'll want more and more. Sounds like it's going to be a very uncomfortable family situation either way.

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