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NSW Friend's Car Damaged - Am I at Fault?

Discussion in 'Property Law Forum' started by TheBigBloke, 2 December 2015.

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  1. TheBigBloke

    TheBigBloke Member

    2 December 2015
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    I was with friends when we took a drive out in a rural area with not much around. We stopped by an old cemetery and decided to explore. We got out of the vehicle and before I knew it the others jumped in. I ran back and she started to drive forward. She continued to drive and I didn't move to the left or the right. I launched up and landed on her bonnet with her vehicle still moving.

    Am I completely at fault? Is there a way out of this?

    Her dad's called me with a quote of $1610 for the bonnet to be replaced. It's a 2009 Hyundai i30. There was a large dent but it looked very fixable at a panel beaters.

    The dad is in the industry and called me saying I can just pay the $1610 or he can do it for $1000 himself. He was throwing around " police", "sue you" and other words which I feel were a fear tactic. He then told me if he goes to police I will receive a criminal record.

    Can anyone help me out, please? Appreciate it!
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

    16 April 2014
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    Jumping on the bonnet of someone else's car is trespass to property and any damage caused is prima facie your responsibility. However from what you have stated above, it sounds as though you jumped on the bonnet in order to avoid being hit by the car. Is that correct? Was it out of self-defence that you jumped onto the bonnet? Or could you have gotten out of the way by some other means?

    If you could not have avoided impact any other way you may be able to allege that your friend assaulted you. Under Australian law assault is defined as follows: "A person who strikes, touches, or moves, or otherwise applies force of any kind to, the person of another, either directly or indirectly, without the other person's consent, ... or who by any bodily act or gesture attempts or threatens to apply force of any kind to the person of another without the other person's consent, under such circumstances that the person making the attempt or threat has actually or apparently a present ability to effect the person's purpose, is said to assault that other person, and the act is called an assault."

    If what she did can be described as assault then you may be able to play her father at his own game and tell him that you will go to the police to press charges against his daughter. She may also be charged with something like reckless driving or similar?

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