According to WalletHub: Yes, someone can sue you for a car accident even if you have insurance. Unless you live in a no-fault state, you can easily be sued for financial and personal damages in car accidents that you cause. If you have a liability insurance policy (which is required in most states), your insurance company will likely pay for an attorney to defend you in court. However, there are certain situations where they aren’t obligated to do so.
When Insurance Doesn’t Have to Pay for a Lawyer
- You did not notify the insurance company within a certain timeframe, which can be anywhere from 5-30 days, depending on the specifics of the policy.
- The cost of the other driver’s damages exceeds the limits of your policy.
- You intentionally caused the accident.
If you have car insurance and you’re sued after a car accident that you caused, it’s likely for one of two reasons: either you don’t have enough insurance to cover all of the other driver’s expenses or the insurance claim process is taking a long time. If the first applies to you, your insurance company is under no obligation to help you once they’ve paid up to the limits of your policy.
However, the rules for filing a lawsuit after a car accident are different in no-fault states. No-fault states require drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance, which provides coverage for minor injuries sustained in an accident. This eliminates the need for small personal injury cases to go to court, as every driver is protected by their own insurance policy. In these 12 states, you can only file a lawsuit against the other driver if your injuries are severe or your economic damages have exceeded a certain amount. The specific thresholds for each scenario vary depending on the state.
While you can’t control whether or not the other driver will sue you after an accident that you caused, there are steps that you can take to put yourself in the best position possible. The most important things are to notify your insurance company of the accident as soon as possible and to understand the limits of your policy. If you do end up being sued, take the time to understand what exactly you’re being sued for and what steps your insurer is taking to help you.
What Should I Do After an Accident If I’m Uninsured?
The most important thing to do is stop and stay at the accident scene until you’ve taken proper action. There are consequences for driving without insurance, but those pale in comparison to the penalties that can result if you leave the scene of an accident (including criminal hit and run charges), especially if anyone is hurt in the crash. Here are more steps to take:
- Call emergency medical services if anyone seems to have suffered significant injury.
- Call local law enforcement to the scene.
- Exchange information with anyone involved in the accident.
- Be careful what you say at the car accident scene. Don’t admit fault for the accident, and don’t discuss any details about the crash.
- Get the names and contact information of any witnesses who may have seen what happened.
- Take pictures of the accident scene, the position of the vehicles, and anything else that might help tell the story of how the accident happened.
It’s important to keep things in perspective here. It’s against the law to drive without insurance (or without proof of “financial responsibility” for an accident), but the fact that you’re uninsured isn’t going to come into play when it comes to figuring out who was at fault for the accident.
What If the Uninsured Driver Is Not at Fault for the Car Accident?
If you were injured in a car accident caused by the other driver, there may still be certain restrictions on what (if anything) you can recover against that driver, if you did not have your own car insurance.
Several states have some variation of a “No Pay, No Play” law. In those states, if you did not have valid automobile insurance in place at the time of the accident, you’re limited in the types of compensation you can receive for your injuries, and in a few states (like New Jersey) you can’t recover anything at all against the at-fault driver. In states like California, you can’t recover “non-economic” damages like compensation for pain and suffering, but you can still get reimbursed for your medical bills.
Spanish Speaking Personal Injury Lawyer in Houston
Spanish-speaking Houstonians can have a more complex time seeking justice in their personal injury cases due to language barriers. This causes them to not take action against those who have left them with financial devastation and physical trauma. At the Law Office of Beverly R. Caruthers, our team refuses to let a language barrier affect your right to justice and compensation. If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident and is in need of Spanish-speaking legal advice, our team is here for you.
We make it simple for individuals who have been injured due to the actions of others to navigate the legal system in order to get the results they need to continue on in their lives. Schedule your no-obligation car accident consultation with Attorney Caruthers today. Our team will work with you every step of the way to ensure your needs are being met and that you are getting the treatment you deserve in your car accident case. Don’t hesitate, the sooner you call the more we can do to get you results.
Houston Car Accident Attorney
If you or someone you love has suffered an injury, experienced loss of income, or are unable to work due to a car accident, you can benefit from the services of a Houston car accident expert in your personal injury case. Whether you missed work due to an injury or due to not having access to a vehicle, Attorney Beverly R. Caruthers can help you!
Our team works hard to bring the most efficient and practical solutions to your car accident case. Beverly R. Caruthers proudly serves and defends the Greater Houston area including but not limited to Baytown, Conroe, Crosby, Humble, Huntsville, Lake Jackson, Missouri City, Pasadena, Spring, Tomball.