If you were injured in a car accident and the other party was uninsured, you may wonder if you can receive compensation. If the other driver does not have the money to pay for your damages, do you have the right to file a lawsuit? What are your other options?
Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers takes on cases involving uninsured drivers. An Alexandria uninsured car accident lawyer from our team can provide legal representation for victims who suffered injuries due to another driver’s negligence. We believe an injured person should not have to pay for someone else’s mistake.
What You Need to Know About Auto Insurance Laws in Louisiana
According to the Louisiana Department of Insurance (LDI), all vehicle owners must carry minimum liability coverage on any vehicle or risk facing stiff penalties (such as fines or having their car impounded). The required minimum amounts for liability coverage include:
- Bodily injury liability coverage: $15,000 per person/$30,000 per accident
- Property damage liability coverage: $25,000
Furthermore, RS §32:866 limits the amount of compensation you can receive if you were the victim in the accident but did not carry insurance on your vehicle. So, if you do not have insurance and someone else is at fault for the accident, you may be liable for your damages up to a certain amount.
For a free legal consultation with a uninsured car accident lawyer serving Alexandria, call (318) 333-3476
Steps to Take After an Accident with an Uninsured Driver
You should take several steps after an uninsured driver strikes you in Louisiana. Make sure you stop your vehicle, first of all. Leaving the scene of an accident is a criminal act.
Once you and the other driver get your vehicles off of the road and out of traffic, focus on these tasks:
Reporting the Accident
You have a legal duty to report most motor vehicle accidents to the police in Alexandria, per RS 32:398. Drivers without insurance may try to convince you not to report the collision because driving without insurance is against the law.
An uninsured driver may promise to pay for your car repairs out of pocket if you do not report the collision. However, keep in mind that this agreement is not legally binding. The other driver could easily refuse to pay—or not have the funds to pay—leaving you with expensive medical and property damage bills.
Therefore, legal professionals recommend that you report any accident immediately.
Getting Medical Care
Were you hurt in your car accident? If so, you may want to call an ambulance. In other situations, you can drive yourself to the hospital to seek medical treatment. Getting medical care helps establish that the accident caused your injuries.
Common injuries in car accidents involving uninsured drivers include:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Head and brain injuries
- Back, spinal cord, and neck injuries
- Internal injuries
- Burns, cuts, and abrasions
Getting medical care quickly can help you get on the road to recovery.
Gathering Evidence About the Accident
You can take proactive steps to build a claim after an uninsured car accident in Alexandria. Start the process by collecting evidence before you leave the accident scene. Evidence may include pictures of:
- Your injuries
- The accident scene
- The damage to your vehicle
You should also collect contact information from any eyewitnesses and the driver who struck you. Finally, consider writing down everything that happened in the accident right away.
Making an account of the accident immediately helps you record the details while they’re still fresh in your memory. A lawyer can use the information in this account while building your claim to bring you damages.
Speaking with a Car Accident Lawyer
You can get professional help on your side if an uninsured driver struck your vehicle in Alexandria. Our team understands the legal complications associated with uninsured driver claims, and we put you first when handling them.
Reaching out to a lawyer immediately allows you to have someone on your side when you communicate with insurance agents, the other driver, and police officers.
Contacting Your Insurance Company
Finally, just because the other driver does not have insurance, it doesn’t mean you should ignore your insurance policy. Contact your insurance agency and inform them that you were in a collision.
Generally, it’s a good idea to work with a lawyer before you provide too much information about the collision. Our team can share more information during your free consultation.
Alexandria Uninsured Car Accident Lawyer Near Me (318) 333-3476
What if the Other Driver is Uninsured?
Although driving uninsured is against Louisiana law, it does not prevent some uninsured motorists from operating a vehicle. Consequently, it can be difficult to recover your losses after an accident.
There are generally two ways to pursue compensation to pay for your medical expenses, lost wages, or other damages in this situation, including:
Filing a Claim on Your Uninsured/Underinsured (UM) Policy
If you have uninsured/underinsured (UM) coverage, you may be able to file a claim with your insurance company. The coverage typically matches the policy limits of your general liability coverage. There is a good chance you have UM coverage unless you rejected it in writing.
If you do not know if you have UM coverage, one of our team members can help you find out.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit Against the Uninsured Driver
If the driver did not have the money to purchase auto insurance, they likely do not have the financial means to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, or pain and suffering. However, we may be able to identify assets that may cover part or all of your damages.
Damages You May Be Able to Claim in an Uninsured Car Accident Case
In a personal injury case, you may be entitled to claim economic and noneconomic damages based on the extent of your losses and the circumstances surrounding your accident. As your attorneys, our job is to identify the at-fault party and establish that their negligence led to your injuries.
You may be eligible to claim the following in your personal injury claim:
- Medical treatment costs
- Estimated future medical treatment or rehabilitation
- Lost wages or income
- Future lost pay or disability
- Property damage
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
While some damages—such as medical bills and lost wages—are calculable, we may have to estimate the value of other damages (such as pain and suffering). We can help you pursue compensation based on the value of your losses.
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How an Alexandria Uninsured Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You with Your Case
When you are injured in an accident and the other party is uninsured, you may have difficulty figuring out how to recover your losses. Our law firm can advocate for you to get you the compensation you deserve. We can help you with your case in the following ways:
Investigating Your Claim
Our law firm takes great care in investigating your claim to uncover the facts. Our investigation helps us establish fault and liability and draw a clear connection between the other driver’s negligence and your injuries.
We can gather evidence to support your claim. Evidence may include a police or accident report, witness testimony, photos, videos, property damage, or medical reports. We will submit all evidence to the insurance company along with your claim.
Negotiating a Fair Settlement
We can review the details of your insurance policy to determine available damages, depending on the circumstances of the accident. We can also handle all communications with the insurer, so you don’t have to.
Representing You in Court
Your insurance company may deny your claim or make an offer that does not reflect the sum of your damages. If so, you may have the option of taking your case to court. We can provide representation and plead your case before a judge or jury.
Our law firm is committed to helping you get the compensation you deserve. We will continue to fight for your rights so that justice is served.
Proving Negligence in an Uninsured Car Accident
An Alexandria personal injury lawyer from Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can determine who to pursue compensation from following a car accident with an uninsured driver. Whomever we seek compensation from—be it the driver, another party, or a government agency—we must prove the following criteria:
Duty of Care
We must show that the party we intend to hold liable for your losses was responsible for keeping you safe. In the uninsured driver’s case, their duty of care to you is implied when they get in the driver’s seat. However, if the uninsured driver does not have the assets available to compensate you, we would need to seek coverage elsewhere.
For example, if a defective traffic light contributed to the accident, we would have to show that the government agency responsible for the traffic light owed you a duty of care.
Breach of Duty
A lawyer from our firm can also help aim to help you prove that the liable party breached their duty of care to you. They might have failed to follow traffic laws or, in the case of a government agency, skipped scheduled maintenance of traffic devices.
Causation and Damages
The liable party’s breach of duty must have caused the accident, and you must have suffered financial, physical, or emotional losses as a result.
Our legal team can work to gather the evidence we need to prove the above criteria.
Contact Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers Today for Legal Assistance
An Alexandria uninsured car accident lawyer will go the extra mile to help you with your case. Laborde Earles Injury Lawyers can help you with your case and fight to get you a fair settlement. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.