A car accident can be a life-changing experience, resulting in injuries and property damage. You can obtain fair compensation through your auto insurance coverage to help pay for medical bills and repairs to your car.
If the auto accident was the fault of an uninsured driver, it’s important to speak with one of the experienced car accident attorneys at the law firm of Nessler & Associates. We can help you determine what type of compensation you may be entitled to based on state laws and insurance policies.
How Common are Uninsured Drivers
Car insurance is required in most states, but not all drivers have adequate insurance policies. A 2019 study by the Insurance Research Council found that 12.6% of drivers didn’t have auto insurance. In Illinois, 11.8% of drivers had no auto insurance.
An uninsured driver may not always stop and check for injuries after a car accident. A 2015 survey from the American Automobile Association reported that hit-and-run accidents accounted for 11.7% of all traffic collisions. Since 2009, fatalities in hit-and-run crashes have increased by 7.2% every year.
How You Can Obtain Compensation After an Accident With an Uninsured Motorist
You can obtain maximum compensation for paying your medical bills and financial losses from certain coverages in your insurance policy. Here are some of the most common options:
Medical payments coverage
Some states require drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) as part of their auto insurance policies. PIP covers all people in an accident, including the driver, passengers, and those outside of your vehicle, including pedestrians.
In lieu of PIP, auto policies in states such as Illinois have the option of including medical payments coverage. This coverage provides compensation for medical care and funeral expenses for you and your passengers in the event of a motor vehicle accident.
Uninsured bodily injury motorist coverage
Having uninsured motorist coverage can help you if you suffer severe injuries in an accident caused by a hit-and-run driver or a driver with no auto liability insurance. The state of Illinois requires drivers to have uninsured motorist coverage policies with a minimum coverage of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident.
Underinsured bodily injury motorist coverage
If you have a higher limit of uninsured motorist coverage in your auto insurance policy, Illinois requires you to have underinsured motorist coverage. If the driver lacks sufficient insurance, you can receive compensation for damages when an underinsured driver’s liability limits are less than the limits of your underinsured motorist coverage.
Illinois insurance laws do not require physical damage coverage for motor vehicles, but your car lender may require it in your auto insurance policy. As part of the physical damage policy, collision coverage pays for damages to your vehicle if you are involved in an accident with another vehicle or a fixed object.
Uninsured motorist property damage
This is an optional auto insurance coverage that pays for vehicle damage if an identified, at-fault, uninsured driver causes it. Those without collision coverage can purchase it for a maximum limit of $15,000 with a deductible of $250.
Personal injury claim
If your accident injuries exceed your uninsured motorist policy limits and your auto insurance doesn’t include additional coverages like collision and uninsured property damage coverage, you may have to file a personal injury lawsuit.
An uninsured motorist attorney from Nessler & Associates can work with you to investigate the accident to sue the driver for damages, including medical bills and lost wages. We can review your case and help determine whether filing a lawsuit is right for you.
What Steps You Should Take After an Accident With an Uninsured Motorist?
After an accident with an uninsured motorist, it’s important to take certain steps immediately after the accident and get medical attention right away.
File a police report
Call 911 to report the accident to the police. When speaking with the officer, state the facts of the accident to prevent the possibility of making incriminating statements. You will then receive a report of the accident from the police officer.
If the driver fled the scene, give the police officer all the details such as the car model, make, and license plate, you remember about their motor vehicle. These details can help the officer look for the driver.
The officer can also note that the incident involved a hit-and-run driver in the accident report, so the insurance company will know this crucial detail when you file your uninsured motorist claim.
Take pictures and video of your vehicle as well as any vehicles that may have been damaged in the collision. If the driver fled, get the contact information from witnesses who saw where the driver went after the accident. Your attorney may identify a hit-and-run driver by asking nearby businesses for surveillance footage if the driver fled the scene.
Pursue a medical evaluation
If you have been injured in an accident and require treatment, visit your healthcare provider. Injuries can occur during a car crash, even if it only appears to be minor damage to your vehicle or minor injuries to yourself. As you receive treatment, keep track of all your hospital bills so you can get a complete picture of your financial compensation for injuries.
Get in touch with your insurance company
You can report your accident with an uninsured driver to your insurance company to file an uninsured motorist insurance claim for reimbursement of costs related to the accident. An accident lawyer can help you with the claims process and understand how to move forward with the insurance company.
Work with a trusted car accident attorney
When you are in an accident with an uninsured motorist, you can benefit from working with an experienced attorney at our law firm. We can help you with the following legal services:
- Review your auto insurance policy: An attorney can review the sources of compensation available in your insurance policy. They can offer you a clearer understanding of how your claim will be handled.
- Put together your claim: The lawyer can use the evidence from your accident to form the basis of your accident claim with an estimate of your damages. This includes medical records, police reports, witness statements, photos, and any other information that has been gathered about the accident.
- Negotiate with your insurance provider: Keep in mind that the insurance company has its own agenda and may not pay all your coverage in full or even deny your claim. Your lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company and take your claim to court if necessary.
Contact Our Uninsured Motorist Accident Attorneys
You can increase the chances of a successful financial recovery from your injuries by working with a car accident lawyer at Nessler & Associates. We have decades of experience working with car accident claims and helping accident victims win compensation for their injuries.
Contact our law firm at (800) 727-8010 for a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our lawyers today.