Who is responsible for a chimney slab that fell onto my car?
because he comes and goes and doesn't like parking his car on the street (He doesn't live here). Well two days ago I went outside, and saw damage to the hood of my car. Apparently a decent sized concrete slab broke apart from the chimney and onto my hood. I only have liability insurance on my car, and I don't have renters insurance. I immediately called him and he was a little nonchalant about it saying "I've never seen a piece that big fall before"... "well hopefully they can just buff it out".
My question is who is the "they"? And who's responsible for it?
2 attorney answers
An owner is required to maintain his or her property in a reasonably safe condition and is responsible for any harm caused by dangerous conditions on the property about which it either knew or should have known. Unless a third party caused the chimney slab to fall onto your car (perhaps by doing work on it) the owner would be responsible - chimneys are not supposed to fall apart if they are being properly maintained. As for who "they" are, he's probably referring to the autobody shop to which you brought your vehicle for repair.
The property owner. Imagine if it was a person sunbathing in that spot. Would anyone doubt the owner who didn’t maintain the chimney was responsible for the ensuing injury?
Absent witnesses you need to prove it was the chimney from the house. Take photos and save the slab. The more damage the more important it is but try to get access to the chimney and match the slab to the missing piece (assuming you can pick it up). If you can prove that chimney fell apart, a doctrine called res ipsa loquitor will likely apply and you’ve met you’re burden by proving the slab came from the chimney.
The owners insurer will almost certainly cover the cost.
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