Car Accident Without Insurance Not at Fault? Yes, You Can Have an Injury Case
Car Accident Without Insurance Not at Fault? If you were in a car accident with a driver who had no auto insurance, your injuries may still be covered.
It is a requirement that all drivers have valid car insurance in most states. It is against the law to drive without insurance in 48 states, except New Hampshire and Virginia. Driving without car insurance in these states attracts penalties, especially if you are involved in a car accident.
Liability insurance is very important because it caters to the damages and injuries of the other party involved in an accident. But what if you are in a car accident that you are not at fault for, but you are uninsured?
If you don’t carry car insurance, you will still be able to claim medical bills and the cost of repair from the at-fault driver. However, you are susceptible to penalties that can negatively affect your driving privileges even if the car accident was not your fault.
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Here's how it works.
If you caused the crash, then you cannot sue or have an injury claims. That's because in illinois, if you are more than 50% responsible for the crash, you aren't allowed to recover any damages.
Next, did the person who hurt you have insurance? If so, then you can make a claim against their insurance.
If not, you can still make a claim for Uninsured Motorist coverge under your own insurance policy. This way, you can still have a case or claim for your personal injuries.
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Car Insurance Laws Differ By State
Laws regarding car insurance vary by state and this impacts how the claim processes are handled by insurance companies. This is true for drivers that are involved in an accident and are found to drive without car insurance.
States with No-Fault Car Insurance Systems
States that follow the No-Fault car insurance system require persons that are injured in a car accident to seek compensation from their car insurance coverage. Only in limited situations do injured persons in these states file a lawsuit.
Ultimately, each party is responsible for their damages regardless of their fault. This means that each party must use their insurance policies to cater to medical bills and repair their cars.
Nonetheless, there are exceptions to this car insurance law in some states. This is concerning the amount for medical costs that a plaintiff can file a lawsuit against the defendant. For example, states like the District of Columbia and Hawaii have a threshold for medical bills not exceeding the victim’s medical payment coverage.
In Utah, the victim of the accident can file a lawsuit if the medical bills amount to $3000. In states like Missouri and California, you can file a suit for non-quantifiable damages if the at-fault driver was driving under the influence when the accident happened. Another exception is with the state of Louisiana, where you cannot sue for the first $25,000 of property damage and $15,000 of bodily injury.
States with Tort Law
In Tort law, perpetrators of car accidents are sued for all the damages that the injured of the car accident suffers. States that apply tort law give victims of an accident the right to claim recovery for their injuries, damages, and any losses they may have suffered.
If you live in a tort state, drivers at fault are required to pay any property damage, medical bills, and lost wages that the injured person has suffered.
Car Accident Without Insurance Not at Fault: What Should You Do?
If you live in tort states and don’t have comprehensive car insurance, you can still file a claim with the insurance company of the driver at fault. You can still seek damages for medical costs and property damages from the at-fault driver.
Basically, you will just proceed with your claim as you would if you had insurance. Here is how to pursue damages against the other party:
- Send a Letter of Demand
To claim compensation, you need to send a letter of demand to the at-fault party outlining the damages and the preferred date for the compensation. The letter of demand should include the details of the accident, cost of repairs and injuries, and the demand for payment. You should also include your contact details, the other party’s contact details, registration numbers of both cars, and the final date for which the money should be paid.
- Make a Claim in Court
If the at-fault driver does not make payment by the demand date, the next step is to commence a claim in court. You can seek the help of a legal professional to guide you on how to start legal proceedings to get compensation.
- Contact an Authority on Financial Matters
Another option to pursue damages when you are not at fault is to go directly to the at-fault party’s insurer. You can engage with financial authority to help you lodge a dispute with the insurer. However, you should note that this process may take time and may come with other requirements.
Consequences for Driving Without Car Insurance
While you can recover damages in an accident caused by another driver, it is important to know that you will face some consequences for not being insured. Of course, the consequences vary from one state to another.
For example, some states like California, Alaska, Michigan, Lowa, Kansas, New Jersey, Oregon, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and North Dakota observe the “No Pay, No Play” rule. According to this rule, there is a limit to the amount of compensation that drivers without insurance can get during an accident.
In these states, the uninsured driver that is not at fault can seek economic damages like medical bills from the liability policy of the other driver at fault. However, they may be limited to seek damages for non-economic losses like pain, missed time from work, loss of quality of life, or suffering.
Also, driving uninsured can make you liable to several fees and fines, depending on your state. Most states will impose a hefty fine of hundreds or thousands of dollars for individuals that drive without car insurance. You may also face legal penalties like license suspension by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Worse still, your driver’s license may be revoked for a few months to one year.
Should You Hire an Attorney to Recover Compensation?
As aforementioned, you are likely to have a difficult time seeking compensation if you are uninsured. In this case, it is important to seek the help of a legal professional to help you recover your compensation.
Desalvolaw has over the years represented victims of car accidents that were not at fault. This attorney offers free consultation 24/7 to determine the best course of action for your case. Don’t hesitate to reach out to ensure that your rights, even if you are not insured, are protected.
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