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You do your best to drive safely and keep your car insurance up to date to make sure you’re covered in case of a car accident, but when the day comes that you are involved in a car crash, there’s an unexpected hurdle. The other driver doesn’t have adequate insurance or any insurance at all. There are only so many ways you can prepare for car accidents, especially in these circumstances. Our Orlando lawyers can help you take the right steps, so your injuries and vehicle damages are covered. We’re available to answer any questions about car accidents and insurance claims.
Filing a claim for an accident that involved a negligent driver who has no insurance or doesn’t have coverage for the extent of your injuries and damages is similar to your average car accident claim, which involves:
- Stay at the Scene of the Accident: Insurance claims require a police report. It’s important you stick around to speak with an officer and provide your statement. He or she can document the incident, which makes filing your claim easier.
- Exchange Information: If the driver is uninsured, they will likely avoid or refuse to give you this information. While you wait for the police to arrive, speak with the other driver and share vital information such as:
- Both of your names, addresses, and phone numbers, which includes the other driver’s name and the owner of the vehicle, if they are separate people
- Policy number, the name of the insurance company, and the policy holder’s name
- The model, make, color of the vehicle and the VIN number (if necessary)
- Photographs and Witnesses: Take detailed photos of the damage to both vehicles, so you have proof of which damages were caused by the accident and which scratches or dents were already there. Identify any witnesses such as people on the sidewalk who stopped when they saw the crash. Ask for their name and phone number and see if they’re willing to stay to speak with the police officer on the scene.
- File Your Claim: There are time constraints for filing your car accident claim, and these are further limited when there’s an uninsured or underinsured driver. The sooner you contact your insurance company, the better your chances of recovering the costs of your injuries and vehicle damages. You will need to have all of your injuries well documented and list your medical expenses.
The steps listed above can be used for any type of auto accident including motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, and crashes caused by defective vehicles. Your options get more complicated when the other driver is uninsured or underinsured because you’re filing a claim against your own insurance provider instead of the negligent driver’s policy.
There are several aspects of uninsured and underinsured claims you need to know, which include:
- File a claim with your insurance company up to the maximum limit of your uninsured or underinsured coverage. This cannot exceed the amount of your primary coverage.
- The negligent driver’s insurance coverage doesn’t cover the costs of your medical expenses and injuries. Our Orlando car accident lawyers can help you determine which insurance company will give you the highest amount for your pain and suffering.
- These claims have shorter filing deadlines in an attempt to avoid covering all of the expenses, some of which are just 30 days. Let your insurance provider know as soon as possible that you intend to file an uninsured or underinsured claim.
Some of the car accidents that involve a lack of insurance coverage can lead to pre-trial investigations, access to your medical records, and witness depositions. You may need to file a car accident lawsuit against your insurance company if you’re unable to reach a settlement. Arbitration may be necessary, but the decision made by the third-party arbitrator is often final, leaving little room for appeal.
If you’ve been in a car accident that involves an uninsured or underinsured driver, please call our lawyers in Orlando as soon as possible at (407) 712-7300. Colling Gilbert Wright & Carter serve clients in Tampa, Miami, and surrounding areas of Florida.