Uninsured Car Accidents in Riverdale
Being involved in a car accident could prove to be stressful and troublesome. However, these feelings are only heightened when the at-fault driver does not have insurance. If you find yourself in this position, it is best to work with an attorney experienced in handling uninsured car accidents in Riverdale. Doing so could increase the likelihood of securing compensation following an accident. To learn more about what a lawyer could do for you, be sure to schedule a consultation today.
Georgia’s Mandatory Automobile Insurance Laws
Georgia is considered an “at fault” state when it comes to automobile insurance. A motorist injured by another driver, or who sustains property damage, will look for compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance. According to Georgia Code § 40-6-10, all Georgia motorists are required to carry minimum insurance called 25/50/25. This equates to $25,000 bodily injury liability to cover one person injured or killed in a crash, $50,000 in bodily injury liability to include more than one person injured or killed in the same crash, and $25,000 for property damage, usually to the victim’s automobile.
Two Ways to Recover from Uninsured Drivers
Victims have two ways to be compensated after being injured in a car accident caused by an uninsured motorist. They can file a personal injury lawsuit or rely on uninsured motorist (UM) coverage purchased from their own carrier.
Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
A victim could file a personal injury lawsuit and seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and loss of consortium. Based on negligence, the victim must prove the at-fault driver shirked the responsibility to drive safely, usually by breaking a traffic rule, such as speeding or running a red light, but sometimes for a criminal act, such as driving while intoxicated. If the victim is injured because of the at-fault driver’s conduct, the elements for a lawsuit are met.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Many uninsured drivers do not have the assets to compensate someone they injure in an accident. An auto wreck attorney could determine if it is worth it for a victim to sue an uninsured motorist. If there is little to recover, victims can turn to UM coverage, which is available to purchase along with their traditional policy.
Georgia Code § 33-7-11 requires all auto insurance policies sold in the state to include minimum uninsured motorist coverage that equals bodily injury liability coverage, $25,000 per person, and $50,000 per accident. Motorists can increase the amount of UM coverage, but it cannot exceed the amount of bodily injury coverage they carry by law. In a UM coverage claim, a motorist must also prove negligence on the part of the at-fault driver and that the driver was uninsured at the time of the accident. Motorists can also opt-out of UM coverage in writing. Still, that move generally is not recommended by Riverdale attorneys who have dealt with auto wrecks between victims and uninsured motorists.
When a Victim is Partially Responsible for a Car Accident
If a plaintiff contributes to a car wreck, under Georgia Code § 51-12-33, the courts will determine the percentage and reduce financial compensation accordingly. However, plaintiffs cannot prevail if, under Georgia’s modified comparative fault law, if they are 50 percent or more responsible for the accident. For instance, Uninsured Motorist is found to be 90 percent at fault for an accident in which the court awards $20,000 to the victim. The award will be reduced to $18,000, which the victim could recover from UM coverage.
A Riverdale Attorney Could Review Your Uninsured Motorist Car Wreck
Automobile accidents are stressful enough. You should not have to worry if a motorist who crashes into you has proper insurance to compensate you for your injuries. Sometimes they do not, but by consulting a Riverdale personal injury lawyer, you will learn that there are avenues to pursue.
If you were hurt in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence, and the at-fault driver is uninsured, call our Riverdale office to speak to a member of our legal team. We are standing by to review your case at no charge for your initial consultation.