Monterey Uninsured Driver Accident Lawyer
If you were hit by an uninsured driver in Monterey, Salinas, or Santa Cruz, the Allen Law Firm is here to help
A car crash injury can be painful physically, distressing emotionally, and costly financially. Negligent drivers who cause the accident because they were speeding, following too close, making unsafe lane changes, driving drunk or distracted, or otherwise negligent are liable to their victims for the full extent of the damages they’ve caused, including medical bills and compensation for pain and suffering. Injury victims rely on the negligent driver’s liability insurance policy to cover those costs, but what if the driver is uninsured? This is not just an academic question but something that happens every day on California roads. Scott J. Allen is an experienced California car accident injury attorney who has dealt with just about every kind of car accident in his more than 20 years in practice, including crashes caused by uninsured drivers. The Allen Law Firm is ready to take on your case and help you get the recovery you deserve. Contact our experienced Monterey uninsured driver accident lawyer today.
California Auto Liability Insurance Law
Most states require their drivers to carry liability insurance that will pay if they get into an accident and cause property damage or physical injury to another driver, pedestrian, bicyclist, etc., and California is no exception. Paradoxically, however, California has one of the lowest minimum insurance requirements, yet insurance rates are among the highest in the country.
California law requires all drivers of vehicles registered in the state to carry 15/30/5 liability insurance. These numbers represent coverage of $15,000 for bodily injury per person, $30,000 for bodily injury per accident (if more than one person is injured), and $5,000 for property damage per accident. Most states have higher minimum requirements that cost less. Drivers who can afford it are wise to purchase higher limits of liability insurance, given how expensive a serious crash can be. As noted above, however, too many drivers in California take the opposite route and don’t carry any liability insurance at all. That’s illegal, but in 2019, 16.6% of California drivers were uninsured, making California rank number ten for having the highest percentage of uninsured drivers in the country. Some might get coverage just long enough to renew their vehicle registration and then let it lapse, hoping they don’t get pulled over for a moving violation or even worse, get into a wreck.
Recovering Compensation Through Uninsured Motorist Coverage
So what do you do if the driver who hit was uninsured? If you have uninsured motorist (UM) coverage on your auto policy, this is precisely what this coverage is used for. Your insurance company will cover your claim when you are hit by an uninsured driver, the same as if the other driver had liability insurance.
Insurance companies are required by California law to offer UM coverage when they issue your liability policy; it’s included unless you specifically rejected it. We recommend that all drivers opt for UM coverage and purchase as much as they can reasonably afford. The cost of UM coverage is only a fraction of your overall policy, and it’s not an area to skimp on, given the high rate of uninsured drivers in California.
If you do have a UM claim, it’s wise to call an experienced auto accident attorney, like the one at the Allen Law Firm, to help you with your claim. You might think your insurance company is looking out for your best interests, but that’s wishful thinking. Their interests lie in avoiding or limiting their liability to you as much as possible. If they can say your own negligence caused or contributed to the accident, they will. They might even say you rejected UM coverage when you thought you had it. If they can’t prove you affirmatively rejected it, you might still be covered. With over 20 years of dealing with insurance companies in auto accident claims, we know how to make sure you get the benefit of your coverage and are compensated for your injuries caused by another driver, even when they are uninsured.
Recovering Compensation From the Uninsured Driver
If you don’t have UM coverage, we might still be able to bring a case against the negligent driver personally. If they were at fault, we’ll build a case that proves their liability to you for the full extent of the damage they’ve caused. With a judgment in hand, we can work to collect from them personally in a number of different ways, such as attaching a lien to their property, garnishing their wages, or going after assets they receive through inheritance or other means. It’s not always worthwhile to go after an uninsured driver who doesn’t have the resources to pay what they owe. We can look at the situation beforehand and advise you accordingly. It doesn’t cost you anything to talk to us and get our advice regarding your options. And if we take your case, we only charge a fee based on a successful recovery, so you don’t have anything to lose by giving us a call.
Contact the Allen Law Firm Today
If you’ve been hit by a negligent driver who didn’t carry insurance, don’t give up; call the Allen Law Firm to find out how we can help. We help car accident victims throughout Monterey Bay from our offices in Monterey, Salinas, and Santa Cruz. Your call is free, and we only charge a fee if we are successful in getting compensation for you. Contact our experienced Monterey uninsured driver car accident lawyer today.