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If you or a loved one have suffered an injury after an accident in California, insurance is usually your best protection. However, if the driver at fault doesn’t have insurance, you may need the help of a personal injury attorney to get fair compensation for your suffering. Talk to the team at Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP after a car accident with an underinsured or uninsured driver. We’ve won over $800 million for our clients, and our 99% success rate means you can trust us to get the fairest compensation for your accident.
Regulations for Uninsured or Underinsured Accidents
Laws for insurance requirements vary state by state, but the state of California requires all drivers to have insurance. If you do not have the required insurance, you can have your license suspended, be fined, or experience worse consequences if you are in an accident.
California is a tort state, which means that before you can use your insurance, the police must find you at fault for the accident. The state requires minimum car insurance coverage for bodily harm and property damage liability. Bodily injury liability coverage is the insurance that will cover you if you injure someone else with your vehicle. Minimum limits are $15,000 for the injury of one person and $30,000 for the injuries of multiple people. The liability coverage is also useful if you become a part of a lawsuit because of the accident.
Property damage liability coverage focuses on the damage of property, as opposed to people’s injuries. California requires you to have at least $5,000 of coverage. If you are responsible for the accident, that money will cover any damage done to property because of the incident.
Because California is a tort state, if you do not have this insurance and you are liable for the accident, you will have to pay for all the damages and compensation.
California also has a rule called “No Pay, No Play.” The “No Pay, No Play” rule says that if you are involved in an accident that is the other person’s fault but you do not have insurance, you cannot receive full compensation after an accident. You may receive compensation for your medical bills but will not likely receive anything for pain and suffering.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage Can Help in an Accident
In California, having no insurance is not the only reason that the courts may not award full compensation for injuries. Because of the required minimum of liability insurance, you may only be able to receive a maximum of $15,000 to cover your expenses. Victims in this situation only receive the amount the at-fault driver has purchased in liability insurance.
There is a way to cover the remaining expenses, however, even if the other driver only has the minimum amount of insurance. If you purchase uninsured motorist coverage, it will pay the difference between the other driver’s insurance and your expenses. Victims can use uninsured motorist coverage for accidents a motorist caused to someone when walking or biking. If you are at fault, however, you are not eligible to use uninsured motorist coverage.
Personal Injury Lawsuit for Uninsured Accident
If you don’t have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, you may be able to receive compensation for your medical bills, time away from work, and other financial needs as a result of the accident though a personal injury suit. Los Angeles based Panish | Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP understand the complexities of California law, and we know how to help you recover the most reward possible for your suffering. Talk to one of our team members today. Call our Santa Monica office today! (310) 477-1700