Car accidents resulting from another driver's negligence may lead to severe injuries that often come with high medical bills, lost income, and other complications. In some situations, an injured driver can look to the at-fault driver's insurance company for financial compensation.
However, what if that driver, for whatever reason, does not have any motor vehicle insurance coverage in place?
In that instance, the accident victim can look to their own insurance company for financial compensation. Accident victims can take this step through an uninsured motorist claim or lawsuit.
If you suffered injuries in an accident another driver caused, and the driver did not have insurance coverage, you need to consult a knowledgeable car accident attorney in Phoenix to explore your legal options.
Your lawyer can review the factual circumstances of your accident and available insurance coverage and take the necessary steps to pursue the appropriate insurance claim.
Your lawyer can also negotiate with insurance company representatives and fight for your right to recover the monetary damages you deserve.
If you file an uninsured motorist claim, and your insurance company will not compensate you fairly for your accident-related losses, your lawyer may file a lawsuit to recover damages.
How Other Drivers Cause Car Crashes
Even though the law requires it, many drivers surprisingly drive without motor vehicle insurance coverage. When these drivers cause accidents, serious injuries may result, leaving victims needing significant financial compensation.
One common way that other drivers cause accidents is by violating various traffic laws.
For example, another driver might speed excessively, aggressively weave in and out of heavy traffic without using the turn signal, tailgate other vehicles, fail to use their rearview or side view mirrors, or fail to yield the right-of-way to another vehicle at a traffic intersection, such as by running a stop sign or red light.
In addition to violating various road rules, another driver may cause an accident if they drive after having too much to drink. A driver is legally intoxicated if they have a blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, that meets or exceeds 0.08 percent, according to a Breathalyzer or chemical testing.
Additionally, commercial vehicle operators, including commercial truck drivers and minor drivers under twenty-one, must follow more stringent legal standards when they get behind the wheel.
A driver who receives a DUI conviction may have to pay criminal penalties, including fines, and the Department of Motor Vehicles may suspend their driver's license for a while.
Additionally, they may have to pay monetary compensation to the accident victim for their injuries. If the drunk driver who caused the accident does not have insurance coverage, the accident victim might need to turn to their insurance company for financial compensation.
Drunk driving is extremely dangerous because it significantly alters a driver's physical coordination and mental state.
A drunk driver may experience blurred vision, delayed reflexes and reaction time, impaired coordination, and other physical and mental symptoms. Consequently, a driver may weave in and out of traffic and cause their vehicle to strike another vehicle.
They may also fall asleep at the wheel, lose control of their vehicle, or fail to notice another vehicle or pedestrian nearby. Finally, a drunk driver may experience delayed reaction time, which prevents them from hitting their brakes in time to avoid a collision.
Car accidents may also happen when other drivers do not watch the road attentively. Instead of watching the road, they might spend time texting on a cellular phone or tablet, programming a GPS, applying makeup, combing their hair, eating, or drinking.
Alternatively, they might turn their head to discipline a young child sitting in the backseat or roughhouse with other vehicle passengers. All these activities may turn a driver's attention away from the road, preventing them from seeing an approaching vehicle and thereby causing an accident.
Finally, some traffic accidents happen when drivers exhibit reckless and careless driving maneuvers. If they are in a hurry to move ahead of other traffic, they may speed, fail to use their turn signals, tailgate other vehicles, cut off other vehicles in traffic, and exhibit other common forms of road rage.
As a result, they might negligently bring about a collision with a single vehicle or multiple vehicles, leading to severe injuries.
You are not alone if you were involved in an accident where an uninsured driver caused severe injuries by behaving negligently.
A skilled car accident attorney in your area can investigate your accident's circumstances and determine your claim options. Your lawyer may then pursue an uninsured motorist claim with your own insurance company, seeking the full monetary compensation you need to recover for your injuries.
Injuries in a Car Accident
Victims of car accidents frequently suffer serious injuries that may require costly medical treatment and other expenses. The injuries that a car crash victim sustains may depend upon various circumstances, including the number of vehicles involved in the collision, the force of the collision, and the accident victim's bodily movements inside their vehicle.
Some of the most common injuries that car accident victims suffer often include traumatic head and brain injuries, eye injuries, neck and back incisions, facial contusions, mouth and teeth injuries, spinal cord injuries, paralysis injuries, broken bones, rib fractures, internal bleeding, internal organ damage, and death.
The more forceful the collision, the more significant an accident victim's injuries. Some accident victims may also suffer permanent injuries, which cause ongoing pain and lifelong suffering.
If the at-fault driver does not have insurance coverage to compensate you for your injuries, then your lawyer can file an uninsured motorist claim on your behalf. However, before beginning settlement negotiations, you need to seek the medical treatment you need for your accident-related losses.
For example, your lawyer can begin gathering the documents necessary to present a settlement demand package to the insurance company on your behalf. Your lawyer can then pursue the financial compensation you deserve to recover for your accident-related injuries and losses.
What Is an Uninsured Motorist Claim?
An uninsured motorist claim arises when another driver causes an accident but they do not have any motor vehicle insurance coverage. In that situation, the injured accident victim can file an uninsured motorist claim to their own insurance company. The accident victim may then recover monetary compensation up to the limits of their insurance policy coverage.
Filing an uninsured motorist claim with your insurance company essentially puts you into an adversarial relationship with your insurance company. However, insurance companies are not ordinarily allowed to retaliate by raising your premiums or taking other action against you simply because you are filing a claim or lawsuit arising from your accident.
Nevertheless, you need an experienced car accident lawyer on your side advocating for you and negotiating on your behalf with insurance company representatives.
Your lawyer can assemble a settlement demand package for the insurance company to review in your case. If the adjuster accepts the claim, then settlement negotiations may move forward.
During settlement negotiations, your lawyer can highlight the strengths of your medical records, point to any favorable expert reports, and pursue the maximum amount of compensation available to you and your claim.
If your insurance company does not compensate you favorably, then your lawyer can file a lawsuit against your insurance company, seeking the monetary recovery you deserve through litigation.
Most car accident cases that are in litigation are resolved at some point along the way. This is because litigation can be extremely costly for everyone involved. However, suppose your insurance company does not offer fair monetary damages for accident-related injuries.
In that case, your lawyer can take your case to a civil jury trial or an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) proceeding, such as binding arbitration or mediation. At a binding arbitration hearing, the parties pre-select a neutral arbitrator who will listen to evidence that the parties present out of court and decide the issue of monetary damages in the case.
At mediation, an independent third-party mediator will have one or more conferences with the parties and assist them throughout their settlement negotiations in an effort to resolve the case in full.
You are the ultimate decision-maker when deciding how best to proceed with your case. However, your lawyer can make recommendations about whether you should accept a pending settlement offer from the insurance company or consider litigating your case in the court system.
Recoverable Damages in an Uninsured Motorist Case
As part of an uninsured motorist claim or lawsuit, you may be eligible to receive various types of monetary damages, depending upon your accident circumstances and injuries.
Generally, the more serious an accident victim's injuries and the more extensive the medical treatment, the higher the compensation they may recover through their claim or lawsuit.
Compensable monetary damages may include the costs of related medical expenses, lost income, loss of earning capacity, mental distress, lost quality of life, loss of spousal consortium and companionship, loss of use of a body part, pain and suffering, inconvenience, permanent disability or disfigurement, and lifetime or long-term care costs, for instance, the costs of residing at an assisted living facility or nursing home.
Your attorney can aggressively negotiate with your insurance company adjuster for a favorable settlement offer. However, if that does not happen, your lawyer can review litigation options with you and pursue the best course of action for you and your case.
Speak to a Car Accident Lawyer Near You Today
If you suffered injuries in an accident that a negligent (and uninsured) driver caused, you need to act quickly and never delay in calling a car accident lawyer.
Swift action can protect your rights and build a strong case. Delays can lead to lost evidence, fading memories, and potential legal complications. A lawyer can guide you on immediate steps like gathering evidence, documenting injuries, and communicating with insurance companies.
Under the state statute of limitations, accident victims have limited time to file a lawsuit seeking monetary damages. If they fail to file their lawsuit within the applicable timeframe, they forever waive the right to recover monetary compensation for their injuries.
A skilled car accident lawyer in your area can determine your eligibility for filing an uninsured motorist claim with your insurance company. They may then handle every aspect of your case, including aggressively negotiating with insurance company adjusters or litigating it to an efficient resolution.
Early consultation empowers you with the knowledge and support needed to navigate the complex aftermath of a car accident effectively. You can ask any questions about a lawyer’s services or the legal process during these free case evaluations. Seek peace of mind and begin protecting your rights today.