If you were injured in an auto accident and the other driver doesn’t have insurance, you may still be able to receive compensation for your losses. At Malman Law, we have decades of experience helping clients in cases involving uninsured and underinsured motorists throughout the Chicagoland area.
While being injured in an accident can be overwhelming, things can quickly get even worse if you find out that the other driver was not insured. Illinois law requires all drivers to carry auto insurance, but unfortunately, research shows that more than 1 in 10 drivers in Illinois are uninsured. With most auto accident cases being resolved through insurance settlements, if you have been injured by an uninsured or underinsured motorist, what do you do?
Fortunately, even if the other driver was uninsured or underinsured, you may still be able to receive compensation for your losses. Malman Law’s attorneys have helped numerous clients collect money to cover their losses in this exact situation.
Seeking Compensation after an Accident with an Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist
There are two primary ways that injured drivers and passengers can seek compensation after an accident with an uninsured motorist. These are:
- Filing an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim with your own insurance policy, and
- Filing a personal injury lawsuit against a third-party that is responsible for the accident.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Insurance Claims
The first and most common way that victims can recover compensation after an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist is to file a claim under their own insurance policy. Under Illinois law, all car insurance policies must include coverage for accidents caused by uninsured and underinsured motorists. This is “no-fault” coverage, meaning that you are entitled to file a claim regardless of who was at fault in the accident. As a result, accident victims commonly file uninsured and underinsured motorist claims where:
- They were injured by a hit-and-run driver
- The accident did not involve a collision (e.g., another driver pulled out in front of you and caused you to swerve off of the road)
- The other driver did not have any insurance
- The other driver had insurance, but his or her policy limits were lower than your uninsured motorist coverage (this is what we refer to as an “underinsured” motorist)
Despite providing an opportunity to recover no-fault compensation, uninsured and underinsured motorist claims can still be exceedingly complex. The laws regarding these claims are complicated, and if you are not familiar with all of the rules and restrictions, you may end up leaving a significant amount of money on the table. For example, did you know that you may be able to “stack” coverage under the insurance policies of all members of your household? At Malman Law, we can ensure that you do everything necessary to recover maximum compensation for your losses.
Seeking Compensation from a Third Party
The second option for securing a financial recovery after an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist is to file a personal injury claim against a third party that is responsible for your injuries. There are many situations where an injured driver or passenger may have a third-party claim. For example:
- The uninsured driver was working at the time of the accident. If the driver who hit you was on the clock, you may be able to file a claim against his or her employer. Under Illinois law, the general rule is that employers can be held financially responsible for the acts of their employees – as long as those acts were undertaken within the scope of employment. So, if you were hit by a pizza driver who was making a delivery, or if you were hit by a government vehicle, there is a good chance that you have a third-party claim.
- You were hit by an uninsured truck driver. In truck accidents, there are numerous third parties that may be responsible for the victims’ injuries. The trucking company, the shipping company, the truck manufacturer, and others could all be liable for your medical bills and other losses.
- Some factor other than the uninsured driver’s negligence contributed to the collision. While most accidents are the result of driver error, there are numerous other potential causes as well. Vehicle defects, dangerous road conditions, and bars serving alcohol to drunk drivers are all potential issues that can entitle injured drivers and passengers to just compensation.
Were You Hit By an Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist? Contact Malman Law in Chicago Today
If you were hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, all is not lost. You may still be able to collect full compensation for your injuries and losses. To make sure you get maximum benefits under your uninsured motorist policy and to find out if you have a third-party claim, contact Malman Law today for a free consultation.