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What to Do After an Accident With an Uninsured Driver

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Posted By Legal Team | March 21 2024 | Car Accidents

A car accident is a frightening and painful experience, especially if you or your loved ones suffered injuries. In some cases, the distress of a car crash continues long after the immediate aftermath of the accident, especially when it turns out that the driver who caused the accident doesn’t have car insurance. As recently as 2019, an astonishing one in every eight drivers did not have insurance. This means there’s a significant risk of the other driver in an accident being an uninsured motorist. In states with fault-based insurance laws like Georgia’s comparison negligence system, the driver at fault for the accident is liable for the property damage, medical expenses, and lost wages the victims suffer. But what happens when they have no insurance?

Always Know What to Do At the Scene of an Accident

Before considering your options after an accident with an uninsured driver, it’s important to know what to do to protect yourself physically and financially after any car accident. After an accident, keep a cool head, never say anything that can be construed as admitting fault, and do the following:

  • First, call 911 to report the accident and give reasonable first aid and comfort to anyone injured
  • If you can move safely and use your phone, take photos of the damaged vehicles and the accident scene. You can also hand your phone to an uninjured person to do this for you if you’re too seriously injured to move without causing further harm
  • Take photos of the position of the vehicles in the accident and the damage to each vehicle
  • Take photos of anything relevant to the crash, such as signal lights, skid marks, or a lack of skid marks on the road
  • Add the contact name of anyone involved in the crash and any eyewitnesses to the accident
  • Go directly to the hospital and have a thorough evaluation with a detailed medical report
  • Report the accident to your insurance company and inform them of the other driver’s uninsured status

Always carefully follow your doctor’s instructions after an accident and keep receipts for medical expenses and out-of-pocket costs.

Who Pays for Damages When a Driver Is Uninsured?

If the other driver caused the accident and has no insurance, it’s important to hire a car accident attorney to guide you through the process and increase your chances of recovering compensation for your damages. Working with a skilled personal injury attorney in Atlanta, there are several options after a collision with an uninsured motorist including the following:

  • Although Georgia doesn’t require drivers to carry uninsured motorists coverage, you may have selected this as an additional option for your policy in which case your insurance company must reimburse you for your losses.
  • You could file a personal liability lawsuit against the driver at fault. Your attorney will advise you if this is a viable option since a driver without insurance often has few assets and little cash, in which case a lawsuit might not benefit you.
  • You could file a claim against a third party. This may be an option if someone else contributed to the cause of the crash. For instance, if a negligent road maintenance crew didn’t repair a pothole and that caused the uninsured motorist to swerve into your lane, or the other driver’s brakes failed due to a defective car part. In some cases, a third party driver may have contributed to the damages in an accident leaving them liable for a portion of the compensation.

A skilled Atlanta car accident attorney is always a valuable asset after a car accident in a fault-based insurance state, but legal representation is especially important after an accident with an uninsured driver.

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