What Happens When the At-Fault Driver Doesn’t Have Insurance?

Whether you are involved in a hit-and-run accident or someone hits you while driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, you might find yourself in a situation where the other driver doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to account for your damages.

When this occurs, you may have to turn to your own insurance policy for coverage. At Reed & Garcia Law, PC, we want to give you some information on uninsured motorist (UM) coverage and underinsured motorist (UIM coverage). This information is especially pertinent because reckless driving is more prevalent than ever during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage

UM coverage protects you in the event of a hit-and-run accident because the identity of the at-fault driver is unknown. It can also account for any accident where the at-fault driver stops but does not have insurance. If you do not know who hit you, you will be dealing exclusively with your insurance company. California does not require all drivers to carry UM coverage, but your insurance company is required to offer this type of coverage. Sometimes, insurers will undervalue or deny valid claims. Luckily, our attorneys can help!

When you know the identity of the at-fault driver, your UM coverage will still apply if that person does not have car insurance of their own. Nevertheless, the uninsured driver may still face criminal consequences and civil liability. Your insurance company might pay out your benefits and then sue the at-fault driver, but the actions of your insurer should not interfere with your coverage.

If you need help dealing with an insurance company, you can always call us at (310) 242-8933!

Underinsured Motorist Coverage

UIM coverage kicks in when the person who hits you has insurance, but their policy limits do not fully account for your injuries and losses. Many people skate by with minimal coverage, which means they cannot afford to be in a serious car accident.

In California, the legal minimum for car insurance only allows $15,000 per person injured and $30,000 in personal injury coverage for each accident. Click here to learn more about the “15/30/5” limits of liability insurance.

When the person who hits you does not have enough insurance coverage to pay for your medical expenses, missed wages, and other damages, your UIM coverage will kick in.

Once again, your insurance company should honor all valid claims, and we are here for you if you face any difficulties.

UM and UIM Benefits Are Especially Relevant in Serious Accidents

Sometimes, drivers flee the scene because they are drinking while driving or doing something illegal. Even if they stick around, accidents with drunk or reckless drivers can have serious consequences. Many people have to turn to UM or UIM benefits because they suffer fractures, broken bones, head trauma, and other serious injuries.

If you are harmed in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, Reed & Garcia Law, PC will help you pursue all the resources you need to recover.

Get started today – call us at (310) 242-8933 or contact us online for a free consultation.