What if You Are Hit by an Uninsured Driver?

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What if You Are Hit by an Uninsured Driver?

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Posted By DAM Firm | October 23 2020 | Car Accidents

Vehicle accidents are not something any driver or passenger wants to experience. Unfortunately, crashes are not uncommon in and around our area. These cases can become immensely more complicated if you are struck by an uninsured driver. Here, we want to discuss the steps you can take in the aftermath of a crash involving an uninsured driver. These steps can be used for a traditional uninsured motorist accident as well as an accident involving a hit and run driver.

Uninsured driving accidents are not uncommon in California

The reality is that accidents happen all the time. In most cases, the drivers involved all have valid insurance, and the claims are resolved through settlements with the respective carriers. However, data provided by the Insurance Information Institute shows us that approximately 15% of all drivers in California are uninsured (during a recent reporting year). This is a significant percentage of drivers on the roadway.

Data available from the California Office of Traffic Safety shows that there were more than 272,000 total vehicle collision injuries during the latest reporting year across the state. Unfortunately, many of those injured were struck by uninsured drivers and struggled to obtain fair compensation for their losses.

Steps you can take after being involved in an accident with an uninsured driver

If you or a loved one are involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, there are various steps that you can take to ensure that you are treated fairly and that you have the best chance to receive full compensation for your losses.

  • Seek medical care. In the aftermath of any collision, you need to ensure that you seek medical care. Not only does this establish a link between the crash and your injuries, but it also ensures your well-being.
  • Contact law enforcement. Whether the uninsured driver stayed at the scene of the crash or fled, you need to stay there and contact law enforcement. Let the police conduct an investigation and complete the accident report.
  • Gather evidence. If you can safely do so at the scene, use your smartphone or another camera to take photographs of damages to the vehicles, injuries, causes of the crash, and more. Get the names and contact information of any eyewitnesses to the crash.
  • Report to your insurer. You need to let your insurance carrier know that the collision occurred. You do not have to go into much detail when you make your initial report, but they do need to be notified soon after the crash.
  • Contact an attorney. You may need to speak to an Orange County accident attorney who can help handle every aspect of your case for you.
  • Continue medical care. Continue all medical treatment recommended by your doctor until they have determined you have reached maximum medical improvement.

Check your uninsured motorist coverage in California

In order for drivers to remain legal on the roadway in California, they must carry the following minimum insurance coverage amounts:

  • Bodily injury liability coverage: $15,000 per person / $30,000 per accident minimum
  • Property damage liability coverage: $5,000 minimum

You will notice that uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is not required in California. However, it is highly recommended that all drivers purchase and carry this coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage is not overly expensive, and will certainly help you cover medical expenses in property damage in the aftermath of an accident involving an uninsured or hit and run driver.

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