After a car accident, there are a number of things you have to deal with. Dealing with medical treatment, car repairs, and, worst of all, insurance companies can cause quite a headache. While this is never fun to deal with, the process is usually fairly straightforward. But if the other party at fault in the accident was not insured it can make the process that much more complicated.
While it is illegal to drive without insurance, about 20% of the people on the road are not insured. If you are injured in an accident, that’s about a one in five chance that the driver who hit you is not insured. So if you were hit by someone who doesn’t have insurance, you might be wondering how do you file a claim?
In most car accidents, there is a victim and there is the at-fault party. When a claim for a car accident is filed, it is typically the victim filing a claim against the at-fault party. Then, the negligent driver’s insurance company steps in to pay the damages. But if the at-fault party is uninsured there are six steps you can take after the accident.
- Call the police – if you need to file a lawsuit, the police report is valuable evidence for your case.
- Seek medical attention – not only do you need to get treatment for your injuries, going to the doctor provides medical records that corroborate your case.
- Exchange contact information – don’t leave the scene without the other driver’s name, address, and phone number.
- Document and photograph the scene – details of the accident can help establish who was at fault.
- Gather witnesses – collect witness statements of the accident from an unbiased party.
- Do not accept money – taking any amount of money from the at-fault party may be seen as a settlement for perceived damages when your case goes to court.
Following these six steps will put you in the best position to be compensated for your losses. But how do you receive this compensation? There are two ways to proceed after an accident with an uninsured driver.
1. File a claim against your own insurance company.
Some insurance policies offer what’s called uninsured motorist coverage (UMC). This coverage is not mandatory to purchase but can come in handy if you find yourself in this situation. If you are in an accident with an uninsured motorist, UMC allows you to file a claim with your insurance company and receive compensation through your own insurance.
2. File a lawsuit against the uninsured driver.
The other way to receive compensation after an accident with an uninsured driver is to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party. Sometimes the uninsured party might not have enough assets to justify the hassle of a lawsuit, but you can talk to a personal injury attorney to see if filing a suit is right in your case. If you do proceed with a lawsuit you could be entitled to compensation for property damage, personal injury, medical costs, lost wages, lifestyle adjustments, or pain and suffering.
If you’ve been involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist, call Greathouse Trial Law today. We can talk you through your options and help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact our office today for a comprehensive case review and advice on your rights and best options.