What Happens if I’m in a Car Accident and the Other Driver Isn’t Insured?

Picture of car accident

When you’ve been injured in a car accident, you might feel a little comfort knowing that your insurance company and/or the other driver’s insurance company will help pay for your medical treatment.

Sometimes, however, you might find out that the other driver is uninsured or does not have enough coverage through their insurance to pay for your injuries. While car insurance is mandatory in California, there are many drivers out there who are uninsured or underinsured, and it’s best that you have plenty of coverage from your own insurance company to cover your damages.

If you’re in a car accident and the other at-fault driver does not have insurance or is underinsured, your insurance company cover may your medical costs, but only if you have the appropriate amount of coverage.

You can (and should) purchase uninsured motorist coverage from your insurance company in the highest amount possible. This coverage protects you in the event you are injured by an uninsured motorist.

While in most states insurance companies are required to offer uninsured motorist coverage to their customers, many people are shocked to learn after an accident that they opted out of uninsured motorist coverage or have an insufficient amount of this coverage.

You can (and should) purchase underinsured motorist coverage in the highest amount possible to help cover the cost of injuries caused by an underinsured driver. This insurance can pay for the difference should the underinsured driver’s insurance policy be unable to pay for all of your costs. The amount of coverage you receive from either underinsured or uninsured coverage will be dependent on the policy you purchase. If you do not have underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance company may not pay for damages sustained in the accident.

You can file a lawsuit against an uninsured or underinsured driver, but you will likely struggle to get compensated for your injuries. For example, if you live in a traditional negligence state like California, you can file a lawsuit against an uninsured driver.

However, even if you prove your case successfully, the lack of insurance by the other driver means you may not get much money from them to pay for damages. Again, you may have to turn to your own insurance company to help cover costs.

If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver, contact a car accident attorney in California who can offer legal advice for advancing your case. The car accident lawyers at Needham Kepner & Fish LLP have years of experience helping injured clients get the compensation they deserve for their medical costs, lost wages and pain and suffering. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.