What If I'm Hit By an Uninsured Driver?
Just because a person has a driver’s license and a vehicle doesn’t necessarily make them a responsible, law-abiding citizen. Regardless of the laws that are put in place and the safety features, manufacturers equip their vehicles with, there will always be ways for people who don’t care to get around legally driving with insurance. There’re many excuses people come up with for not purchasing an insurance policy for their vehicles. The monthly budget is tight, so they decide to spend the money elsewhere. The vehicle they are driving is not their own, so they decide they do not need to be covered by an insurance policy. There are even people who will decide simply paying off the note on a vehicle is reason enough to cancel their insurance. The stress of being in a car accident in San Antonio can be even more stressful if the at-fault driver does not have the proper insurance.
What happens if you get into an accident with an uninsured driver?
Regardless of the excuse, driving a vehicle without insurance is not only irresponsible, it’s against the law in Texas. If you find yourself involved in a car accident and the uninsured driver of another vehicle is at fault, you may have no option other than filing a claim under the under-insured or uninsured motorist provisions of the insurance policy you hold on your vehicle.
While uninsured and under-insured are related, they are separate provisions of your insurance policy that go into effect only when an at-fault driver has either no car insurance or a lack of coverage needed to pay the property damages or bodily injury they are at-fault for in the accident.
What is uninsured motorist coverage?
Uninsured motorist coverage is designed to pay for any property damage or bodily injury you may encounter in the situation the driver responsible for the accident doesn’t have automobile liability insurance.
In this situation, you have a choice of suing the driver responsible. There are situations when the individual will have the financial resources to write a check and cover the needed financial amount. However, this isn’t a scenario you want to be left depending on. You are more likely of being reimbursed by making a claim under your policy’s uninsured motorist provision.
There is a time limit to how soon you must file a claim
More than likely, you will learn on the date of the accident whether the driver responsible is covered by liability insurance. The details of insurance coverage will be discovered through the police investigation of the accident. Chances are, you will be informed by the police if the driver responsible isn’t insured.
Can you sue uninsured driver?
If you’re involved in an accident that isn’t investigated by the police, you will still want to exchange information and details in regards to insurance information with the other driver. Once you’re informed the other driver isn’t covered by liability insurance, you will want to make an uninsured motorist claim on your policy as soon as possible. Normally, there will be a strict time period in which one of these claims may be filed. You will typically have no longer than thirty days to discover the claim is something you need.
How much uninsured motorist coverage can I have?
In most cases, your insurance company will not allow you to carry a higher amount of uninsured motorist coverage than the amount of the liability coverage you carry on your own policy. This coverage is normally reasonable and fairly inexpensive. It would create financial issues if the insurance company would allow policyholders to load up on uninsured motorist coverage while carrying the bare necessities of their own vehicle’s policy.
Contact Ketterman Rowland & Westlund
If you were recently involved in an accident caused by someone else, our car accident lawyers can help you pursue compensation for your injuries. Contact our law firm today for a free consultation.