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Were You in an Accident With an Uninsured Motorist?

Obtaining Compensation From an Uninsured Motorist

Generally speaking, men are charged more for car insurance than women because they are statistically more likely to cause accidents. However, this doesn't matter if a motorist chooses to avoid buying insurance altogether. Of course, this can have a significant impact on your life if that person's vehicle collides with yours one day.

Stop and Collect Yourself

The first thing that you want to do after an accident of any kind is to stop at the scene, collect your thoughts and render aid if possible. While waiting for police or emergency or medical personnel to arrive, you are encouraged to take pictures, gather video footage or take other steps to obtain evidence. This evidence will be included in the insurance claim that you should file in the next few hours or days.

Filing Your Insurance Claim

If the driver of the vehicle that struck yours doesn't have insurance, you will need to file an uninsured motorist insurance (UMI). This is an optional addition to your basic auto insurance coverage, so you'll need to review your policy first to ensure that you have it. You may also need to review your policy to determine your deductible as well as your coverage limits. The insurance claim will include the pictures, videos and other information that you gathered. It should also include contact and other information for the other driver as well as a copy of the police incident report generated. This information will ideally serve as proof that the other motorist was at fault for the wreck and that you're entitled to compensation.

Your Passengers May Be Covered as Well

Typically, your UMI policy will cover any damages incurred by your passengers up to the policy limits. For instance, if your friend was hurt in the wreck and had to go to the hospital, a UMI claim would likely cover some or all of the medical bills incurred. An Allentown personal injury lawyer may be able to help determine if other parties are entitled to compensation.

What Happens in a Hit-and-Run?

A hit-and-run case would also result in filing a UMI claim even if the other driver did have insurance. This is because there is no way to know if this is true nor is there any way to know who to file a claim against. However, if the other driver is eventually found, your insurance company may take action against that driver to recoup some or all of the funds that it paid out.

If the Other Driver Is Underinsured

If the other driver is underinsured, a policy claim may help cover the difference between what you are owed and what the other driver's policy will pay. This may avoid the need to go to court to seek additional damages in your case.

If You Don't Have UMI

You could still be entitled to compensation for medical bills, car repairs and other damages even if you don't have UMI. In such a scenario, you may consider filing a lawsuit in an effort to recoup your losses related to the other driver's actions. An Allentown personal injury lawyer may be willing to work with you to review your case. It may also be worthwhile to take legal action if your UMI policy doesn't cover the extent of your damages. In such a scenario, a judgment would cover the difference between what your policy covered and what your case is worth. In Pennsylvania, you have two years from the date of an accident to file a lawsuit. However, you may still be able to settle the case out of court at any time. Your attorney may file a lawsuit as a precaution even if you intend to reach a settlement. If you have been involved in a crash with an uninsured motorist, contact the team at Metzger & Kleiner in Lehigh Valley today. You can get in touch with us by phone at 610-435-7400 or by sending a message using our online contact form.

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