Getting into a car accident is rough, but getting hit by someone who doesn’t have car insurance can make things even more difficult. If you’ve been hit by a driver with no car insurance, learn what options are available to you and how a car accident lawyer can help guide you through this difficult process.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
When you get into a car accident with someone and that person is deemed at fault, you would typically make a claim against their auto insurance policy. However, if that driver does not have auto insurance, you will need to file a claim with your own insurance company’s uninsured motorist coverage up to your policy limits. You may also choose to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver, but this can be a difficult process that’s best done with the assistance of a personal injury or car accident lawyer.
Making an Uninsured Driver Claim
As soon as you suspect or realize that the negligent driver does not have car insurance, you need to inform your own insurer that you may need to file an uninsured motorist claim with them. Insurance companies usually have deadlines for alerting them, many are as brief as 30 days, so inform them of your decision as soon as possible.
Uninsured driver claims generally progress much the same way as regular auto accident claims. Your insurer will launch an investigation to gather evidence such as witness depositions and your medical records relating to the injuries from your accident. You want to be as reasonably cooperative during this process as you can. If you and your insurance company are unable to come to an agreement on a settlement amount, you can’t file a lawsuit against them.
Rather than filing a lawsuit against your insurer if you can’t agree on the settlement, you must submit a claim to binding arbitration. Binding arbitration is a hearing in front of an arbitrator or a panel of arbitrators that is more informal than a court procedure. The arbitrator or panel decides whether you or your insurer wins. Unlike a court trial, if you lose, your options for an appeal are very limited. Consult with your car accident lawyer to make sure you are acting in your best interests.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer
If you’ve been in an accident with a driver who doesn’t have auto insurance, an experienced car accident lawyer can help you through the claims process. Lewis & Keller is proud to have law offices in both Greensboro and Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Altogether, our talented attorneys have over 150 years of legal experience, and we’re here to help you. Contact us today for more information.