Auto accidents are stressful enough, especially if you are left with injuries or extensive damage to your vehicle. But if you or the other driver is uninsured, then you are likely left with additional questions about your rights or whether you are able to legally file a personal injury claim against the driver who is responsible for your injuries. Much confusion exists about uninsured motorists, so let’s take a minute to explore your options for pursuing compensation following an accident involving uninsured drivers.
More Common Than we Think
There are more uninsured drivers on the road than most people think. According to the Insurance Information Institute, approximately 1 in 8 drivers are uninsured. There are a variety of reasons why someone may be uninsured, from not being able to afford coverage to simply forgetting to make a payment. Regardless of why someone gets behind the wheel without an insurance policy, it’s important to understand what happens when accidents involving uninsured motorists occur.
When an Accident Happens
Even if we strive to be responsible and safe drivers, there is no guarantee that we will never be involved in an accident. If you are the victim of a car accident and you are uninsured, you may be hesitant to seek compensation, as you may feel wary of calling attention to your uninsured status. However, California law does not require you to carry liability insurance—while this is one option for drivers to protect themselves, you can also demonstrate your financial responsibility in other ways, such as creating a cash deposit on file with the DMV. Even if you are uninsured, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries or damage to your vehicle under state law. While you will likely be eligible to recover compensation for medical costs and car repairs, it may not be possible for you to receive compensation for “non-economic” damages, such as pain and suffering.
Seek Clarification and Support
An experienced California personal injury attorney will be able to answer your questions about pursuing compensation following a car accident, whether you are insured or not. If the driver who struck you is uninsured, you can also discuss the ramifications of this scenario with your personal injury lawyer. To learn more about your rights, contact Hales & Associates, A Professional Law Corporation at (951) 489-3320 today to get started.