What To Do If The Other Driver Is Uninsured Or Underinsured

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Car wrecks are never simple, but the aftermath of a collision becomes even more complex if the other driver is uninsured or underinsured. Understanding your rights and options is crucial in such scenarios. Your car accident lawyer can advise you of your likely next steps and what to do as far as seeking compensation if insurance isn’t an option. Our friends from Council & Associates, LLC, have suggestions for good steps to take if you’ve been hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver.

Immediate Post-Accident Steps

First and foremost, prioritize safety. Move to a safe location if possible and check for injuries. Even if injuries seem minor, seeking medical attention promptly is essential.

Regardless of the other driver’s insurance status, contact the police. An official accident report will be invaluable when dealing with insurance companies and any subsequent legal actions. Provide the officers with all necessary information and avoid discussing fault at the scene.

Collect as much information as possible. This includes the other driver’s name, contact details, vehicle information, and license plate number. Take photos of the accident scene, vehicle damage, and any visible injuries. If there are witnesses, gather their contact information as well.

Notify Your Insurance Company

Inform your insurance company about the accident promptly. Many policies require immediate reporting to ensure coverage eligibility. When speaking with your insurer, provide them with all collected information and the police report number. Your insurance agent will guide you through the next steps based on your policy’s provisions.

Understand Your Insurance Coverage

Review your insurance policy to understand your coverage. If you have Uninsured Motorist (UM) or Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage, you can file a claim under these provisions. UM coverage helps when the at-fault driver has no insurance, while UIM coverage applies when the at-fault driver’s insurance is insufficient to cover your damages. Additionally, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) or Medical Payments coverage can help with immediate medical expenses.

File A Claim Under UM/UIM Coverage

If applicable, file a claim under your UM or UIM coverage. Your insurance company will investigate the claim and, if approved, compensate you for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages up to your policy limits. Keep detailed records of all related expenses and correspondence with your insurer.

Consider Legal Action

If your damages exceed the limits of your UM/UIM coverage, or if you encounter difficulties with your insurance company, consulting a personal injury attorney is advisable. An attorney with experience handling these types of car accidents can evaluate your case, negotiate with insurance companies, and represent you in court if necessary. They can also explore other potential sources of compensation, such as suing the at-fault driver directly, though collecting from an uninsured driver can be challenging.

Explore Other Avenues For Compensation

In some cases, there may be additional avenues for compensation. If the at-fault driver was working at the time of the accident, their employer might be liable. Alternatively, if a vehicle defect or roadway hazard contributed to the accident, you might have grounds to pursue claims against other parties, such as manufacturers or government entities.

Facing an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver is daunting, but understanding your options and taking the appropriate steps can help you secure the compensation you need.

Note: The information provided in this blog post about injury car accidents in Los Angeles is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is established by accessing or using this information. Readers should consult with a qualified attorney for advice specific to their situation. The authors make no representations regarding the accuracy or suitability of the information provided and disclaim any liability for reliance on it. Laws and regulations may vary and are subject to change.

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