Car accidents are already stressful and often overwhelming, but when the driver who hits you doesn’t have insurance, the situation can become even more complicated. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the essential steps to take if you are in the unfortunate scenario of an accident involving an uninsured driver. We’ve covered you, from immediate actions at the accident scene to the legal options available, providing clarity and guidance during a challenging time.
If An Uninsured Driver Hits you, take the steps that follow:
Step 1: Call the Police
If an uninsured driver hits you, the first thing you should do is call the police. This will ensure the incident is documented and make it much easier for your insurance company to process the claim.
The uninsured driver will also likely get a ticket, which can help if they try to flee the scene. Additionally, your insurance company requires a police report approving the claim for your medical expenses and vehicle damage.
It’s also important not to accept money from the other individuals on the scene. They may offer you money, hoping you won’t report the crash to the police or insurer.
Step 2: Exchange Information
You should exchange insurance information with the driver as a standard part of any car accident. Ask for their insurance card, vehicle license plate number, and driver’s name.
If you have any eyewitnesses, try to get their names and contact information. They can help recreate the accident scene to help your insurance company understand what happened.
Uninsured driver coverage is typically available through your car insurance policy. Working with your agent to ensure adequate uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage would be best. This allows you to claim reimbursement for expenses due to uninsured or underinsured drivers.
Step 3: Take Photos
No matter how severe your injuries or losses are, taking pictures of everything is essential. This includes vehicle damage, skid marks, road conditions, traffic controls and signage, weather conditions, and any visible injuries you may have.
You should be able to do this without interfering with law enforcement and first responders. You should also seek out eyewitnesses and ask for written statements from them. A police report will be one of the most important factors your insurance company considers when determining whether or not to pay you under your uninsured motorist coverage. You should always complete this step. Even if the other driver says it is unnecessary, do it anyway.
Step 4: Contact Your Insurance Company
Whether or not the other driver is insured, you should always call your insurer as soon as possible. That will let them know you’re reporting the accident and get the ball rolling on filing your claim.
If you have uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance provider should pay for your medical bills and other expenses related to the crash. That’s because most states require drivers to have auto insurance. However, some drivers either can’t afford it or have allowed their coverage to lapse. In those cases, suing the driver will only do a little good because they likely need the assets to cover your damages.
Step 5: See a Doctor
Regardless of whether the uninsured driver has insurance or not, you should make sure to see your doctor immediately following the accident. It’s essential that your doctor correctly examine you and provide treatment instructions that will help with your recovery.
You also want to get the contact information for any eyewitnesses. Their testimony can be precious as you move forward with your claim. If an uninsured driver hits you, you may have to go through your car insurance company for compensation. However, the steps you take in the aftermath of the accident could make it much smoother.
Step 6: Contact an Attorney
When you talk to the police, the other driver, and witnesses, don’t admit liability or fault. Taking the blame could give them ammunition to use against you later on.
Also, waiting too long to file a claim could increase your insurance rates. This is especially true if you file a claim against an uninsured motorist.