Every driver in Powder Springs is required by law to have a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage. If they don’t have this coverage, they face fines and penalties that may include getting their license taken away. But, these harsh penalties don’t seem to deter some drivers—they still drive even without insurance on their vehicles. When you’re involved in an accident with one of these irresponsible drivers, it will often mean that they don’t have the money to pay for your losses after the crash. If that happens, it’s time to call in a Powder Springs uninsured motorist accident lawyer.
Remember: in many uninsured motorist accidents, you may still be able to recover money.
John Foy & Associates has over 20 years of experience dealing with drivers who have no insurance at all or who don’t have enough insurance to cover all of your injuries or losses. We understand how frustrating it can be to realize that you may not be able to get full payment for your costs from an insurance company. Our team can walk you through the other options you may have even if the other driver doesn’t have insurance. Let us give you a free consultation. Call us at 404-400-4000 and get your free consultation today.
What can I do if the other driver doesn’t have insurance?
Georgia is a fault state. That means that the driver who was at fault for the collision should pay for the injuries and damages that they caused. In most circumstances, it’s actually the driver’s insurance company that is footing the bill for an accident. That’s because most people cannot afford to pay for someone else’s losses and medical expenses after a crash on their own.
When the other driver doesn’t have insurance, that leaves them individually accountable for your damages and losses. That means that they are responsible for all of your expenses directly. While some people certainly could pay for these expenses outright, most people won’t be able to just hand you money to cover your losses. Instead, you may need to consider other options to get the money that you deserve after a crash.
Your lawyer will help you work through your potential options. Some of the most common avenues for recovery after a collision in the City of Powder Springs include:
- Using other insurance policies that might apply to your situation
- Using your own uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage
- Using your own personal injury or collision coverage
You always have the option of taking the other driver to court and getting a judgment against them anyway. Once you have a judgment, you can use it to enforce payment, including garnishing their wages or putting a lien on their properties.
What is underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage?
Under Georgia law, your insurance company is required to offer you underinsured/uninsured (UM/UIM) coverage. In most cases, you would have had to sign something to opt out of this insurance. That means that you might have UM/UIM coverage and may not even realize it.
UM/UIM insurance applies when you are involved in a collision with a driver who doesn’t have insurance at all or has only low insurance coverage. It’s provided by your own insurance company. That means that you don’t have to rely on the other driver to pay you out of pocket—your insurance company will foot the bill up to your policy limits.
Be aware that there are notice requirements that you must follow to use your UM/UIM coverage. It’s important to let your insurance company know that an accident occurred as soon as you can. In fact, it’s a good idea to let your insurance company know that you might be using your UM/UIM coverage even if you aren’t sure if the other driver has insurance—it’s better to be early than have your claim be denied because you didn’t report it fast enough.
This is also why it’s good to involve a lawyer from the start. Your attorney understands the deadlines and can notify your insurer in accordance with your policy.
Even though UM/UIM coverage is from your own insurance company, that doesn’t always mean that everything will run smoothly. Even your insurance company will try to save money when it comes to paying your claim. They may underpay you or outright deny your claim in some circumstances. That means that you should keep records of every expense that you have and be sure that it gets submitted right away. If you have any trouble getting bills paid, you may need to call the team at John Foy & Associates for back up—we can take your own insurance company to court on your behalf if necessary.
How do I know if I have uninsured motorist coverage?
Your insurance policy should explicitly state whether you have uninsured motorist coverage and the amounts of coverage that you have. Unfortunately, insurance policies are often tough to read. If you aren’t sure about whether you have coverage, give us a call and we can examine your policy. We can also determine whether your coverage was wrongfully denied if your insurance company is telling you that you aren’t covered and you should be.
How much will my uninsured motorist coverage pay?
The amount of coverage that you have can be somewhat deceiving. Although the limits may say, for example, $25,000 in personal injury coverage, that amount may actually be smaller depending on specific facts and the type of coverage.
There are generally two types of UM/UIM coverages: Stacking and non-stacking. A “stacking” policy is what you likely assume you have—if the limit is $25,000, then your insurance company will pay you for your losses up to $25,000, in addition to whatever you get from the other driver. But not all UM/UIM policies work this way.
The alternative, “non-stacking” policies, however, can be somewhat confusing.
With these policies, you can never get more coverage than what’s listed in your plan. For example, imagine you have $25,000 in coverage, and the other driver has a small policy with $10,000 in coverage. You would think you’d get $35,000 total ($25,000 + $10,000), but not with a non-stacking policy. Instead, your policy will only pay out $15,000, to bring your total recovery up to the $25,000 maximum listed on your policy. This tiny change in insurance language can make a big difference in your rights.
Navigating these policies can be hard—and insurers like it that way. The less you understand your policy, the less likely you are to catch any mistakes the insurer makes or negotiate for the amount you truly deserve. This is one reason why a good lawyer is critical in uninsured accident cases.
Talk to a Powder Springs Uninsured Motorist Accident Lawyer for Free
Even if the other driver doesn’t have insurance, you still have options. Let us help you. John Foy & Associated can put over 20 years of experience on your side—and help you get the money you deserve. Give us a call for a FREE consultation. Contact us at 404-400-4000 or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.