Tips When In a Car Accident With an Uninsured Driver At Fault

The few hours after a car accident can be really stressful. Knowing that the car insurance coverage, whether your own or the other driver’s, will be able to compensate the loss and damages is a little comforting. However, what can you do if the other driver is uninsured? Can you recover from the uninsured motorist?

Your Legal Options If The At-Fault Driver Does Not Have Insurance

While car owners are required to have auto insurance, many drivers do not have insurance, perhaps because they are unable to afford the coverage. According to statistics, in the US, one in eight drivers are uninsured. What can you do if you were in a car accident and the other driver is uninsured?

One option is to file a lawsuit against the uninsured driver to seek compensation. In all car accident cases, you have the option to sue the other driver, insured or not. In case of a motorist who is not insured, you can file a lawsuit and seek reimbursement and hold the other driver liable for the pain and suffering, lost wages, medical bills, and vehicle damage.

The other option is to claim from your own insurance company to pay for the compensation claim in the event of a collision caused by the at-fault driver who does not have insurance. This is possible if you have uninsured motorist coverage in your policy.

Challenges In Suing An Uninsured Driver In a No-Fault State

While you can sue the uninsured motorist in case of collision, compensation claims against a person who didn’t have insurance may be more complicated than you think. Here are some difficulties suing parties usually encounter:

  • The most common reason motorists drive without insurance or adequate coverage is that they cannot afford it. Because of this, suing an uninsured driver can lead to a dead end, especially if the at-fault motorist does not have sufficient assets to answer for the damages and losses.
  • Filing a lawsuit requires you to prove that the person driving the other vehicle was responsible for the accident.
  • If the driver is unidentified, it would be difficult to hold the person liable.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage Vs. Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Uninsured motorist coverage protects car accident victims who are injured during car accidents caused by uninsured drivers. It is an additional coverage that you include in your insurance policy so that in case an uninsured driver hits you, you can recover from your insurance company.

On the other hand, there are times when the driver has insurance, but the coverage is insufficient to pay the damages fully. If you have underinsured motorist coverage, it can protect you or your family in case you’re in a car collision with someone who only has minimal no-fault insurance.

What Difference Does It Make If I Was Hit By An Uninsured Or Underinsured Driver?

In most car accidents, the other driver’s insurance company will cover the liabilities incurred by the other person.

If someone has insurance but does not have enough coverage to cover the costs of the accident, the said person is said to be underinsured. You can claim first from the underinsured motorist’s insurance, then your underinsured motorist coverage may cover the excess amount.

On the other hand, if the person who hit you is not covered by a car insurance policy, you can file a lawsuit against the other person to claim for the losses and damages that you suffered. Unless you have uninsured motorist coverage, your only option for recovery is filing a lawsuit.

What Should I Do If I’m Hit By An Uninsured Driver?

As with any other vehicular accident, the best course of action is to file a report with the proper authorities. Never leave the scene of the accident, and make sure to have yourself checked for injuries.

Also, make sure to gather evidence relevant to the accident. Document as much information as you can. Make sure to get the other driver’s contact information and ask about the other driver’s insurance. It is best to ask for insurance information so that you will know if the negligent driver has insurance coverage or not.

Make sure to call a car accident lawyer to discuss your situation. More importantly, notify your own car insurance company right away if you will be filing an uninsured motorist claim.

What Is No-Fault Or Personal Protection Coverage?

Personal injury protection is also known as no-fault insurance. It covers medical bills and lost wages if ever you’re injured in an auto accident. The no-fault coverage protects you regardless of who caused the accident. Currently, there are twelve (12) no-fault states where drivers must have a minimum coverage of personal protection.

Can I File a Lawsuit Against An Uninsured Driver?

Yes, you may sue a negligent driver who caused you to suffer personal injuries and other damages. However, if the driver does not have any assets or property to pay damages, you might end up getting nothing from the negligent party.

Can Your Own Coverage Help?

As mentioned, you have the option to file a legal claim against the uninsured motor vehicle driver. But if you have collision coverage in case of an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you can claim benefits from your own insurer. Having uninsured motorist coverage is an advantage following an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.

What You Need To Recover Damages In a Car Accident

You can recover financially after a car accident. Among the financial compensation that you can claim include payment for your medical bills, lost wages, and property damages. To recover damages, make sure that you report the vehicle collision to the police. Proper documentation, including taking photographs and getting the contact info of the parties involved and witnesses, will help you in establishing your claims. Remember to take a picture of the vehicle damage as well.

What If The Other Driver Is Uninsured, But Is Driving An Insured Car?

If you got into an accident with an uninsured driver who was driving an insured vehicle, the insurance policy of the vehicle will be applied and will extend to the resulting accident. It is as if the at-fault driver is an insured driver. However, this will only apply if the said driver is authorized to use or has not been excluded from the insurance policy.

Do You Need An Experienced Car Accident Attorney To Go After An Uninsured Driver?

An experienced car accident lawyer can help you recover from an uninsured motorist. For example, an attorney can help you file a claim with the insurance company. If you are suing the other driver, your lawyer can help you prove the fault of the other driver.

If the negligent motorist is bankrupt, your attorney can suggest other legal options in order for you to claim against the at-fault motorist who is uninsured.

Contact The Clark Law Office For a Free Consultation.

Michigan has one of the highest rates of uninsured motorists. In fact, 25.5% of Michigan motorists do not have their own insurance policy.

If you are worried about your legal options because of an auto accident caused by an uninsured driver, don’t hesitate to contact The Clark Law Office for a free case evaluation. For years, we have assisted many of our clients in recovering millions of dollars due to auto accidents. Our dedicated lawyers are always ready and willing to help our clients to get the best results possible. Call now for a free consultation.

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