What if the At-Fault Individual Does Not Have Enough Insurance?
A car accident is a terrifying experience and often leaves victims with serious injuries and damages, resulting in considerable stress. If you are not at fault for the accident, then you have a right to claim compensation against the other driver. However, if the other driver does not have enough insurance to cover your damages, then it will make the situation more complex and uncertain.
The best way to protect your right to compensation is to speak to an experienced car accident lawyer. They can help you evaluate all of your options for compensation and enhance the likelihood of securing what you deserve.
At Chris Morrow Law PLLC, our impressive record of success and tailored approach demonstrates our commitment to providing all car accident victims with exceptional legal representation. We provide a free consultation and operate on a no-win no-fee basis so that you don’t have to face additional financial burdens for seeking help after suffering car accident injuries.
Regardless of the other driver’s insurance status, you are entitled to recover compensation for your damages if you have been the victim of a car accident. Our Austin car accident attorney will investigate every possible source of compensation and will work tirelessly to pursue justice on your behalf.
What Does it Mean if a Driver Doesn’t Have Enough Insurance?
If the other driver doesn’t have enough insurance, it means that their insurance policy limits are insufficient to cover the total cost of your damages. This situation often involves a collision with an underinsured motorist who carries some insurance, but the coverage limits are below the expenses that you have incurred due to the accident.
When a driver who is at fault for an accident is underinsured, their insurance will only cover damages up to the policy limits. If your damages exceed these limits, you will need to explore other avenues for compensation. You may be able to claim compensation from the at-fault driver personally or through your own insurance if you have underinsured motorist coverage.
Underinsured motorist coverage is an optional add-on to your insurance policy that provides protection if you’re involved in an accident with a driver who has insufficient insurance to cover your losses. If you have this coverage, it may help fill the gap between the at-fault driver’s insurance limits and the total cost of your damages. An attorney can help you review your car insurance policy and understand the extent of your coverage and the other driver’s policy limits.
If you do not have underinsured motorist coverage or if your coverage is still insufficient to pay for your losses, you may benefit from other avenues to compensation. For example, if the driver was working, you may be able to claim from their employer. Or if a mechanical error contributed to your accident, you may be able to claim against a manufacturing company. An attorney will evaluate your case, gather evidence and ensure no avenue to compensation is left unexplored.
How Can an Attorney From Chris Morrow, PLLC Help You Pursue Justice if The Other Driver is Underinsured?
An attorney can provide invaluable assistance in cases involving underinsured drivers by offering legal advice, exploring all avenues to compensation, representing your interests to insurance companies, and helping you navigate the complexities of the claims process. Some ways an attorney from Chris Morrow, PLLC, can help include:
- Assessing Your Situation – An Austin car accident lawyer from Chirs Morrow, PLLC, can examine the specifics of the incident, scrutinize the evidence, and evaluate the severity of your injuries and damages to identify the most suitable strategy for obtaining compensation.
- Informing You of Your Choices – Your lawyer can educate you about your legal entitlements and the various methods for obtaining compensation, such as submitting a claim to your own insurance provider under your underinsured motorist coverage, seeking damages from the responsible driver directly, or seeking compensation from a third party.
- Negotiating with Insurance Providers – Your lawyer can negotiate with the at-fault driver’s insurance company to ensure you get the highest possible compensation under their policy. They can also negotiate with your own insurance provider if you need to submit a claim under your underinsured motorist coverage.
- Collecting Evidence – Your car accident lawyer can gather and organize the required evidence to create a solid case, including police reports, witness accounts, medical documentation, and expert accounts.
- Establishing Fault and Damages – Your lawyer will strive to prove the underinsured driver’s responsibility for the incident and illustrate the extent of your injuries and damages.
- Initiating a Lawsuit, if Required – If negotiations with insurance providers do not result in a sufficient settlement, your lawyer can file a lawsuit against the underinsured driver to seek the compensation you’re entitled to.
- Advocating for You in Court – If your case proceeds to trial, your lawyer will represent your interests, presenting the evidence and arguing your case before the judge or jury to optimize your chances of a positive outcome.
Dealing With Insurance Companies After an Accident With an Underinsured Driver
It is important to know that insurance companies are driven by profit, including your own. Therefore, you need to tread carefully when speaking with insurance adjusters after a car accident, even one that wasn’t your fault. They may try and use underhanded tactics to devalue your claim by getting you to admit fault in some way or lower the extent of your injuries or emotional suffering.
When you hire an attorney, they will take over all negotiations with insurance companies. They will understand how to protect your rights and negotiate with insurance companies without letting them manipulate the situation.
Other Avenues to Compensation After an Accident With an Underinsured Driver
After an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, there could be alternative avenues for compensation that could be used to compensate you for your damages, for example:
Filing a Claim Against a Government Agency
If substandard road conditions, such as potholes, debris, or insufficient road signs, contributed to your accident, you may have grounds to file a claim against the government agency responsible for road maintenance.
Filing a Claim Against the At-Fault Driver’s Employer
If the at-fault driver was working at the time of the accident, you might be eligible to seek compensation from their employer. Companies must ensure their employees have proper insurance if they are driving for work-related purposes.
Filing a Claim Against a Manufacturer or Mechanic
If a vehicle defect contributed to the cause or severity of your accident, you might have a claim against the car parts manufacturer or a mechanic. For example, if faulty breaks caused the accident, then the car manufacturer could be held partially responsible for the accident.
Texas Crime Victim’s Fund
If your accident falls under specific criminal categories – Aggravated Assault, Failure to Stop and Render Aid, DWI, Criminally Negligent Homicide, Manslaughter, Intoxication Manslaughter, or Intoxication Assault – the Texas Crime Victim’s Fund may provide coverage for some of your damages.
What to do After an Accident With an Underinsured Driver
After a car accident, your initial steps should be similar, regardless of the circumstances. Taking the right steps will help protect your right to just and fair compensation and will help ensure that you have a robust case.
Focus on Safety and Dial 911
First and foremost, prioritize your safety and the safety of others around you. Assess yourself for injuries; if you are severely injured, stay put and wait for assistance. If possible, check on others around you for injuries as well.
If anyone has sustained serious injuries, call 911 so that paramedics and police can arrive at the scene. Paramedics will tend to injured individuals, while police will address any remaining hazards and file a police report regarding the accident. If possible, note the attending officer’s name and badge number.
Gather Evidence and Contact Details
If you are not severely injured, begin collecting evidence from the scene that may support your claim. Take photographs of the overall scene, your injuries, property damage, and any other relevant factors, such as road debris or skid marks.
It is also important to gather information from all drivers involved, including their names, contact information, and license plate numbers. If there are witnesses, ask for their names and phone numbers, as your attorney may seek a statement from them later.
Seek Medical Care
If paramedics did not attend to you at the scene, seek medical attention for your injuries as soon as possible. Your medical report will be crucial to your claim. This step also helps protect your health and well-being, as adrenaline may mask the extent of your injuries.
Inform Your Own Insurance Company
After a car accident, notify your car insurance company about the incident. Keep in mind that insurance companies are profit-oriented and benefit from paying you less than you deserve. You may want to consult an attorney before speaking with your car insurance company for guidance.
When contacting your insurance company, stick to the facts of the accident, avoid admitting fault, and avoid discussing your damages and medical costs in detail. Simply inform them about the accident and its location, and provide the other driver’s details.
If the other driver was uninsured, inquire if you have uninsured or underinsured motorist liability coverage. This optional insurance coverage may cover your damages if you have it. Determine the extent of your coverage to assess whether an uninsured motorist claim would adequately compensate you.
Consult a Car Accident Attorney
If you’ve been in an accident involving an underinsured driver, your case will likely be complex. To maximize your chances of obtaining fair compensation, consult an experienced attorney such as those at Chris Morrow Law, PLLC.
We are committed to seeking justice for car accident victims in Texas and will do everything possible to protect your rights. We are prepared to handle complex cases, including those involving underinsured drivers, and will explore all potential sources of compensation. We offer a free consultation and operate on a no-win, no-fee basis, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us today.
What if The At Fault Individual Does Not Have Enough Insurance?
Given the high cost of damages following a car accident, it is surprisingly common for victims to be facing a situation with an underinsured driver. If the at-fault driver’s insurance policy is insufficient to cover medical bills and other damages, it becomes even more imperative to seek legal representation.
At Chris Morrow, PLLC, our dedication lies in passionately advocating for our clients. We prioritize building an attorney-client relationship built on trust so that you can focus on your recovery, feeling confident that everything is in hand.
When you find out that the at-fault driver was underinsured, you will likely feel anxious about your future. Fortunately, options may be available to you, and we have the skills, resources, and experience necessary to explore every possibility. We provide a free consultation and work on a no-win, no-fee basis, so you have nothing to lose by contacting us today to gain clarity on your next steps.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced car accident attorney in Austin at 512-520-8100.