Getting in a car accident is not something you plan for, but having insurance at least prepares you for the aftermath. Auto insurance is required in almost every state, but what happens when the other driver doesn’t have it? Finding yourself in a crash with an uninsured motorist changes the way you handle the process.
Get Their Information
After a collision, it is standard to do an information exchange with the other driver. You each give your insurance information, driver’s license information, and registration. When you find out that the other driver doesn’t have insurance, you should still get their information. Your insurance company will want to contact them to get their side of the story.
In some cases, you may be dealing with a driver who refuses to give you any information. Taking pictures of the car, the license plate, and the VIN allows the insurance adjuster to track down the registered owner of the vehicle. If the other driver is belligerent, wait until the police arrive to facilitate the information exchange.
Don’t Take a Cash Offer
Some uninsured drivers will offer you cash on the spot for your damages. They may do this because they are breaking the law by not having insurance, and they don’t want to incur fines. Taking cash from the at-fault driver at the crash scene is a bad idea. For starters, you don’t know how extensive your damage is. Your car may look fine, but there could be unseen damage. Plus, you may also find out later that you have an injury. As good as the deal sounds, it is best to turn down a cash settlement.
File a Claim
Contact your adjuster and file a claim as soon as you can. Give them the evidence you gathered at the scene including pictures, witness contact numbers, and the police report number. When they find the uninsured driver responsible for a crash, you will have some choices to make. If you carry uninsured motorist coverage, your insurer will pay for your damages. This same thing holds true if you live in a no-fault state. However, if you don’t have this coverage and you live in a tort state, you may have to come out of pocket to pay for all repairs and bills caused by the uninsured driver. Your remedy for this is a lawsuit against the driver to recoup the money you are out.
Any auto accident is stressful, but one where the at-fault driver is uninsured may be harder to handle. A lawyer, like a car accident lawyer in Indianapolis, IN from Ward & Ward Law Firm, is your best bet to get through the process and file a suit against the uninsured driver.