Why do I Need to Seek Payment From My Car Insurance When I was not at Fault?
Have you suffered an injury due to a car accident that someone else caused? If so, you may be wondering why your car insurance would need to pay for the injuries you sustained. Some drivers do not have insurance coverage, or their insurance policy will not cover your injuries. In other instances, the driver who caused the accident could be insolvent, or not able to pay out a damage award. In these circumstances, it may be wise to seek compensation from your own insurance policy.
Motor vehicle accidents can become quite complicated and convoluted. In many car accidents, several insurance companies are involved, or multiple drivers may be at fault. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we have extensive experience in dealing with North Carolina motor vehicle collisions. We sit down and thoroughly discuss all aspects of our client's motor vehicle accidents.
Our attorneys will contact both our client's insurance company and the other driver's insurance company. Depending on our clients' goals, we work with them to negotiate the best possible outcome. Contact our Charlotte personal injury law firm to set up your free initial consultation today.North Carolina Requires Drivers to Obtain Minimum Levels of Auto Insurance
North Carolina drivers must have the following coverage to operate a vehicle. North Carolina driver’s insurance policies must include the following requirements:
- Minimum liability coverage for bodily injuries of $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident
- A minimum property damage liability coverage of $25,000 per incident
- A minimum uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage of $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident
- A minimum uninsured or underinsured motorist property damage coverage of $25,000
The penalties for violating North Carolina’s automobile insurance requirements are relatively inexpensive. The penalties and fees are range from $50 to $150. Approximately 9% of North Carolina drivers do not have auto insurance. Drivers who do not have insurance do so for a variety of reasons. Some drivers would rather risk paying the small fine for being uninsured than pay a monthly car insurance fee.Uninsured Drivers May be Insolvent
Unfortunately, if you have suffered an injury caused by an uninsured driver, your options for seeking recovery may be limited. If the at-fault driver does not have insurance, your other option is to bring a civil lawsuit against the driver. Many uninsured drivers are insolvent, meaning they do not have enough money or assets to pay a judgment for damages against them. If they are unable to compensate you for your injuries, bringing a personal injury lawsuit against them may not be a worthwhile option.
If the at-fault driver lacks insurance and is insolvent, your best option may be to file a claim with your own insurance company. Having to use your insurance to cover injuries when another driver is at fault can seem unjust. However, when 9% of North Carolina drivers are uninsured, the chance of an uninsured driver causing a collision is not insignificant.What Will My Insurance Cover?
Drivers who have the legally required amount of insurance will have uninsured or underinsured auto insurance. If the at-fault driver has no insurance or the at-fault driver's insurance does not cover the cost of the accident, you can file a claim with your insurance through your uninsured motorist coverage. You should be able to receive the same compensation for your costs that you would receive if a fully insured driver caused your accident.
Your insurance policy may also include coverage for medical payments in addition to your uninsured or underinsured motorist policy. Medical payment coverage will allow you and any who were in your vehicle at the time of the accident to receive reimbursements for the medical expenses you sustained in a crash.Filing a Claim With Your Insurance Company Could Mean a Rate Increase
Insurance companies sometimes raise a driver's rates if they file a car accident claim, even if the accident was not their customer's fault. There are currently no laws preventing insurance companies from raising the rates of their customers who report accidents. If the at-fault driver did not have insurance and is insolvent, filing a claim with your insurance may be the only option to seek compensation.If You Have Been in a Charlotte Car Accident, We can Help
At Arnold & Smith, PLLC we understand how stressful experiencing a car accident can be. If the at-fault driver who hit you lacks car insurance, you may be worried about covering your medical expenses. Contact our law firm today to schedule your free initial consultation.