Few things in life are as frustrating or frightening as finding out that you’ve been involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist. This finding is going to strike immediate fear in the heart of most injured drivers or passengers. It means that even if you’ve suffered horrific physical and emotional trauma during an accident, you feel like you might never recover the compensation you’re entitled to as a victim of negligence. Here are a few things to remember if you’ve been in an accident with an uninsured motorist.
At-fault Uninsured Driver Basics
If the other driver is at fault and doesn’t have insurance, your first refuge might be UMI (Uninsured motorist coverage). This is insurance that YOUR insurance company has available and that you MIGHT – might is the big word here – have on your policy. It’s usually a mere fraction of the amount of damages you might actually suffer in an accident, though, and in most cases is dreadfully inadequate to cover medical bills and lost wages sustained in a serious accident. So while it is a good thing if your insurance company provided you with this type of option, and you took them up on it, but it won’t cover all of your damages if the injuries were severe.
More likely to help you in this case is if you hire an attorney who can file a lawsuit against the at-fault uninsured driver. If you live in a state with traditional negligence provisions, filing a lawsuit is possible. No-fault states do not have this type of refuge, and it’s a sad thing, but there may be other options for you if you live in a no-fault state. What traditional negligence provisions allow you to do is file a lawsuit against the other driver who caused your injuries. The reality is that many drivers who aren’t carrying insurance in the first place will not be able to pay you anyway, even if you win a lawsuit.
Using a lawyer to obtain damages from insurance
As you can see, even in traditional negligence states, it may be impossible to get a dime to cover your injuries from an uninsured motorist who didn’t even have money to carry insurance in the first place. Your best bet is to turn to your own insurance in order to collect any type of compensation possible to help you in your case. This means that you can use any uninsured motorist coverage or additional collision insurance coverage you might have in order to help pay for your damages.
Facing a car accident where an uninsured motorist is the culprit is often a nightmare for people. Only a good personal injury attorney can help to make sense of the tragedy you’re facing right now. And it truly is a tragedy when someone ignores the laws of their state and fails to carry car insurance before operating a vehicle. Even sadder is when that person causes horrific harm and injury to another person. A personal injury lawyer is there to seek justice in your case just like any other case, even if it’s an uphill battle at times.
There are instances where a personal injury lawyer can win damages for someone who was injured by an uninsured motorist. Their first task will be to see if you live in a no-fault state (a good attorney will know this answer by heart). From there, they can work with your insurance to try to get a fair settlement for the injuries that you’ve sustained. And while you may have to sit on the sidelines for awhile and just let things happen, a compassionate, knowledgeable personal injury attorney is going to really go to work for you and make sure that you see justice in your case. If you’re facing this type of uphill battle, stop going it alone. Contact a good personal injury attorney.