Can I, as my son's representative, be involved in the settlement of my son’s car accident? 32 Answers as of June 27, 2013

The insurance company does not want me to be involved in the settlement of this claim and wishes to discuss everything outside of my presence. I have not secured an attorney at this time and the case is ready for finalization, i.e., extending an offer.

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Lapin Law Offices
Lapin Law Offices | Jeffrey Lapin
If your son is 19 years old or older, is not medical or legally incompetent and is not under a guardianship then the insurance company does not have to deal with you regarding your son's car accident. You do not have any legal standing to act on his behalf. However, if your son granted you a power of attorney to act on his behalf then you would have standing to deal with the insurance company. You just need to be cautious that you are acting pursuant to the powers granted you under the power of attorney and that you are not providing legal services to your son, which would violate Nebraska laws and rules regarding the unauthorized practice of law. If the power of attorney was drafted correctly, you should be able to negotiate and reach a settlement agreement with the insurance company without stepping over the line and be providing "legal services."
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 10/18/2012
Michael Anthony Wing, P.C.
Michael Anthony Wing, P.C. | Michael Anthony Wing
How old is your son? Are they offering to pay the limits of the policy of insurance?
Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 6/27/2013
Ferguson & Ferguson
Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
Are you an attorney? If not, they do not have to talk to you.
Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 10/11/2012
Law Office of Lisa Hurtado McDonnell | Lisa Hurtado McDonnell
Is the son a minor? If so you must be involved, if not then they may excluded you since your not an attorney.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 10/11/2012
Lewis B. Kaplan | Lewis B. Kaplan
If your son is an adult under no legal disability and does not want you involved then you are not going to be involved . If he is a minor it is a different situation . In fact in Illinois if settlement involves enough money a guardian (you) has to be appointed by the probate court and petition filed for court approval of settlement . If as an adult he wants you involved in meetings with insurance company that is OK too . Since insurance company may have already said no to this it looks to me like insurance company wants to STEMROLLER your son. Just another indication that your son needs the services of a lawyer to handle the claim .
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 10/10/2012
    David F. Stoddard
    David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
    If your son is a minor, they cannot prevent you from being involved, unless the mother has custody and she wants to exclude you. If your son is an adult, and wants you to be involved, they can refuse to discuss the claim in your presence if they want. Your son can insist that you be present. If no one gives in, then there will be an impasse. Once there is an impasse, the only way to resolve it is to file a lawsuit. Most insurance companies would rather avoid suits.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    You need to 1) get a court ordered settlement Guardian ad Litem to determine if the settlement if fair; 2) you need to get a guardian to maintain the settlement in your child's best interest until he turns 18 years old.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
    If your son is 18, he is legally an adult and only he can speak for him. If he's under 18, then only you (or his father) can speak for him.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Law Offices of Ronald A. Steinberg & Associates | Ronald A. Steinberg, BA, MA, JD
    If your son is under the age of majority, you can and should get involved. If your son is an adult, pursuant to the age requirement in your state, there is NOTHING that you can do legally. If your son does not want you involved, then you cannot be involved. However, your son may be an idiot, because the insurance company will have an opportunity to take advantage of him. There are several insurance companies that I would not trust as far as I could throw them, so if he is dealing with one of them, he is going to get screwed over. The only question is:"how badly?"
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Bozich & Korn | Joseph A. Korn
    While this is not my area of expertise, if your son is a minor and not represented by an attorney, they would need to speak with you. If for no other reason than the fact that a minor is not considered able to enter into a valid and binding contract. So even if they did get his agreement, it could be thrown out by a court.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Steven Harrell, Attorney at Law | Waymon Steven Harrell
    You really need to employ an attorney to deal with insurance companies in injury cases.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    John Russo | John Russo
    First of all how old is your son? You either inadvertently, or conveniently left that out. By the way you presented your question it would seem that the insurance company believes you are a problem. So if your son is considered an adult in your jurisdiction, which it would seem that he is since they want to negotiate with him only, then how can you claim be his representative, based on what standard? Also an offer is not at the finalization stage, it is what it is, an offer, and since he does not have legal representation one thing I can guarantee, it will definitely be a low-ball number. So the answer is no unless they agree, or your son demands you be there or he won't negotiate, but that could hurt rather then help.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    Do you have a court order appointing you conservator or a power of attorney signed by you son if he is an adult? If not you have no right to be consulted.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    If your child is under 18 it is your game. If over 18 butt out .
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    If your son is under 18, then they have to speak with you. If he is over, you would need a POA, or written authorization for them to speak with you. Otherwise he needs an attorney. F
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Attorney at Law | Marco Acosta
    If your son is over 18, then he will need to deal directly with insurance company. You of course can give him informal advice, but he alone will sign the settlement papers. If he is under 18, then you are the legal guardian and they will need to deal with you. If he is over 18, and you have been appointed by the court as a conservator (for example, if he is disabled, etc) to manage his affairs, then they deal with you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    If your son is an adult and you are not his conservator, I see no reason why the insurance company is legally obligated to talk to you at all.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Stephens Gourley & Bywater | David A. Stephens
    Yes you can if he is a minor or disabled, or if you have his consent.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Hirsch, Closson, McMillan & Schroeder, APLC
    Hirsch, Closson, McMillan & Schroeder, APLC | Paul Schroeder
    If you're son is a minor, he must have a guardian to represent his interests in the case. If not, your son can tell you whatever he wants, but the insurance company won't talk to you without a signed authorization from him.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP
    Dwyer, Black & Lyle, LLP | Kevin Habberfield
    If your son is deceased, there is an administrator of his estate and any settlement discussions would go through the administrator. If your son is alive, then his parents entertain settlement discussions. Either way, this will typically be a parent and require court approval in both instances. If the other parent is the administrator or has brought the claim, they would control. However, if your son is deceased both parents would have a claim in that situation and both would be consulted, even if only one of them is the administrator. If the insurance company isn't talking to you, who are they talking to? You need an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Law Offices of Frank M. Nunes, Inc.
    Law Offices of Frank M. Nunes, Inc. | Frank M. Nunes
    If you son is under the age of 18 years old, or suffers from an incapacity, then the insurance company has to go through his parent or guardian. Otherwise, if you son is an adult, why can't he handle this on his own?
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Richard E. Damon, PC | Richard E. Damon
    Provided you son signs an authorization or power of attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Law Offices of Mark West
    Law Offices of Mark West | Mark West
    How old is your son? In what manner are you his representative if he is over 18? If your son is over 18, the insurance company is within its rights to deal directly with your son. You can advise him outside of their presence if he wants your advice. If he is under 18 you have the right as a parent to act on his behalf, and if a lawsuit is filed (or if you want to spend the court filing fee even without a lawsuit) you can be appointed as his guardian ad litem for the lawsuit.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Downriver Injury and Auto Law | Michael Heilmann
    It depends on how old you son is. A minor cannot settle their own claim.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Law Office of Russell D. Gray, PC
    Law Office of Russell D. Gray, PC | Russell D. Gray
    You should find an attorney to make sure your son's interests are being looked at, assuming your son is a minor or legally incompetent. If he is an adult, then there is probably no reason for you to be involved. Also, if your son is a minor or incompetent, it is very likely there will need to be court approval of whatever settlement deal is reached. You or your son should find an attorney to make sure the deal is a fair one.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Mike Yeksavich | Mike Yeksavich
    If your son is an adult he can do whatever he wants to include using you as his representative or not using you.
    Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC
    Matthew D Kaplan LLC | Matthew D Kaplan
    How old is your son?
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 6/27/2013
    Fairlie & Lippy, P.C.
    Fairlie & Lippy, P.C. | Steven Fairlie
    Get a lawyer. You will get a much higher offer. Further, unless your son is a minor or you are the executor they probably do not have to deal with you if they don't want to.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz | Craig L. Pankratz
    It depends on if your son is an adult or a minor. If your son is still a minor, then you have the authority to speak for your son. In fact, if he is a minor, he does not have the ability to enter into a settlement.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    SHAPIRO LAW GROUP | ERIC L. SHAPIRO
    If your son is an adult, you would not normally be involved in settlement discussions.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 10/10/2012
    Law Offices of David M. Blain
    Law Offices of David M. Blain | David Blain
    If your son is a minor then he is legally unable to enter into a settlement agreement. The insurance company knows this. You should not be representing your son, unless you are an attorney. You should retain an attorney to maximize the amount of compensation your son is legally entitled to receive. Studies have shown that individuals who retain personal injury attorney's receive on average 50% more for their damages.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 10/10/2012
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