The Driver That Hit Me Is Uninsured, What Now_

The Driver That Hit Me Is Uninsured, What Now?

Being involved in a car accident can be emotionally, physically, and financially devastating for all parties involved. Unfortunately, whenever you have suffered injuries or property damage in a car accident with an at-fault driver that is not insured, the difficulties surrounding your accident will only be worse. There are over 1.6 million uninsured drivers in Texas everyday, making the likelihood of being involved in an accident with one of these drivers more likely than many realize. Do not navigate this difficult time on your own, instead work with an experienced Houston car accident attorney, such as Beverly R. Caruthers. Attorney Caruthers and her team will work with you to get you justice in your case so that you can comfortably move forward with your life. The sooner you reach out to share the specifics of your car accident case, the more our team can do to help you. 

Whenever you have had the misfortune of being involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, your first reaction may be to file a lawsuit against them in order to recover the cost of your damages. Unfortunately, this is rarely as effective of a solution as drivers believe it to be. It will be difficult to get the compensation you deserve, in a timely fashion, and may end up costing you quite a bit of time, money, and resources to pursue. Working with an attorney who can help you fight your case may be enough to help you recover some of the money you deserve, but the other driver also has the option of filing bankruptcy, which may end up leaving you with attorney fees, in addition to paying for your property damage and medical bills. Many uninsured individuals struggle to pay the cost of insuring their own vehicles, and do not have enough assets to pay for the cost of your damages. 

How To Recover Compensation From An Uninsured Driver in Texas

Whenever you have been hit by a driver with no insurance in Texas, there are some important steps to take in order to protect yourself and recover as much compensation as possible for your damages:

-Immediately call the police and have them make a report at the scene that proves the other driver is not insured

-Contact your insurance company and file a report letting them know everything that happened, and give them as much information about the uninsured driver as possible

-Determine if the uninsured driver was working at the time of the accident or if they were driving independently 

-File a bodily injury claim, a property claim, or both if applicable to your car accident case. Supporting these claims with medical records can help you to prove the injuries you have suffered.

-Filing a property damage claim with your insurance company is typically the fastest way to get your car damages repaired

-If the car you were driving was totally paid off, make sure you have property damage coverage to protect against accidents like this 

-You may not get the full replacement value of a totaled car unless you have gap insurance.

Why does it matter if the uninsured driver was working at the time of the accident?

Too often, businesses will not take the necessary steps in order to verify the employee they have driving has the required auto insurance needed to legally drive while conducting official business. If the at-fault, uninsured driver was involved in a car accident conducting official business during work hours, you may have legal recourse against the employer.

Make a bodily injury claim, a property damage claim, or both. After a car accident, you can make a claim for bodily injury and a claim for property damage. Because most accidents don’t involve significant bodily injury, you will likely want to speed up a claim that will help you get your car fixed after a collision.

This is where your own insurance policy comes in.

Filing a property damage claim with your own insurance company is likely the fastest way to get your car fixed.

While it’s unfair that you should have to file a claim on your own insurance, there are little options that are as fast and effective as filing a property damage claim with your own insurance company.

If your car is leased or has a bank lien, you should have this type of coverage — as the lender usually requires it to finance the payment of the car. 

If you have a policy that does not cover property damage and you are hit by an uninsured driver, you have very few options and those options are mainly bad. 

Our suggestion is to call your insurance company and ask that they provide you property damage coverage.  It cost a little more, but it is more than worth it if you are hit by an uninsured driver.

If you were driving in a car that was paid off, check to make sure you have property damage coverage.

If you have other vehicles that are paid off without this type of coverage, we strongly suggest you get it because you will be glad you have it when someone causes thousands of dollars of damage or completely totals your car.

You may not get the full replacement value of a totaled car unless you have gap insurance. Insurance companies are known to undervalue or underpay their clients for the cost of replacing a totaled car.

That’s because they agree to pay “fair market value” for the car in your policy, and often that fair market value doesn’t equal the amount of payments you have left to make, putting you in a difficult situation where you can’t purchase another car until you pay off the full balance of the totaled car, or you’re forced to roll over the remaining debt into a new car loan.

This is why we suggest that people buy gap insurance to help pay for this difference.

If you suffered bodily injury, follow the same steps. You can choose to make an uninsured motorist bodily injury claim against your own insurance if your coverage provides it. Check with your insurance company right away if you determine the at-fault driver carried no insurance whatsoever and you were injured in the accident.

You can also make a claim for personal injury protection (PIP) or Medpay, depending on what coverage you have. PIP is an extension of car insurance available in Texas that can cover medical expenses and is designed to be paid without regard to fault, making it another viable option if you are involved in an accident with someone with no car insurance.

Consequences for Driving Without Insurance

Life is full of risks. Some are worth taking, some are not. Like jumping out of an airplane: You take a class, then climb onto the plane, strap on your parachute and jump. However, you did your research, considered the consequences, and decided it was a risk worth taking. But here’s the question: Would you have jumped without the chute?

Some people take the risk of driving without insurance. If you do so in Texas, though, your risk may be a lot like jumping without a chute. The penalties are harsh—and the consequences can be devastating—no matter how you look at it.

Texas Insurance Requirements

Texas, like other states, requires all drivers to carry a stated minimum of liability coverage. In the Lonestar State, this is $25,000 for property damage, $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident for personal injury).

If you purchased your car with a loan, your lender will likely require you to have comprehensive and collision insurance coverage in addition to any legal minimums. Be sure you are aware of any insurance requirements your lender imposes on you.

Although most drivers in Texas comply with the law and carry at least these legal minimums, many do not. Some estimates put the percentage of uninsured drivers in Texas at around 20%.1 Many of these drivers are risking serious consequences.

Driving Without Insurance—First Offense

The first time you get caught driving without valid insurance in Texas, you will be cited and fined between $175 and $350.2 Until 2019, there was also a surcharge of $250 added to your annual driver’s license fee for each of the next three years after an offense. This law was repealed, however, and all outstanding fees were canceled after Sept. 1, 2019. Now the most you will pay the first time you are caught driving without insurance in Texas is $350.3

This may not sound like a lot, but it sets you up for even bigger penalties if it happens again.

Additional Offenses

The numbers go up quickly for subsequent convictions. If you are caught driving without insurance an additional time, you will be fined between $350 and $1,000.2 Repeat offenders also risk having their license revoked and their vehicle impounded.4 If that happens, you will face a long expensive battle to get your license reinstated and your car back.

So, if you have been keeping track, the costs of driving without insurance in Texas have gone from hundreds to possibly thousands of dollars in fines, fees, and additional expenses. Compare these numbers to the cost of actually keeping your policy up to date, and suddenly dropping your insurance doesn’t seem like such a good idea.

The average car insurance rate in Texas in 2020 was $1,391 per year. That’s significantly less than the costs that could add up from driving without insurance.5

The Real Costs of Driving Uninsured

So far, we have only outlined the immediate legal and financial consequences that will be imposed on you by the State of Texas for driving without insurance. But there are other—potentially far greater—costs if you are at fault in an accident.

In Texas, you can be held 100% liable for any and all physical injuries and property damage resulting from a vehicle accident that you have caused.6 Depending on the extent of the damage, these can easily reach thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars. An uninsured driver could see a lifetime of accumulated assets disappear in an instant.

The Bottom Line

You should ask yourself if saving a little money per month by keeping your auto insurance low—or not having any—is worth the risk. Proper coverage is an inexpensive way to protect yourself in case of unforeseen accidents. Be sure you talk to your agent and make sure you are covered against legal and financial consequences.

Abogada de accidentes automovilísticos en Houston

At the Law Office of Beverly R. Caruthers, we fight for justice in your case! Our team refuses to let a language barrier affect your right to getting a fair insurance settlement in Houston. 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 those who have been injured in car accidents 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 help your case!

Best Car Accident Attorney in Houston TX

If you have been injured, experienced loss of income, or are unable to work because of 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. Our legal team is bilingual and offers Spanish speaking legal counsel for all of our clients. If you need legal representation following an incident don’t hesitate to contact Beverly R. Caruthers Law Office! 

Beverly R Caruthers Law Office
Address: 4141 Southwest Fwy, Suite 620
Houston, TX 77027
(713) 526-9557
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In the aftermath of an accident that leaves you or a loved one injured, it is crucial to know where to turn for support and justice. The Caruthers Law Firm stands as a beacon of unwavering commitment to the cause of pursuing justice for injury victims. With a track record that speaks volumes about our dedication to excellence and passion for our clients, we have garnered recognition throughout the Houston area as a trusted name in the legal community. When you or a family member suffers an injury due to the negligence of another, the need for an attorney who is not just competent but also recognized for their excellence becomes paramount. The Houston personal injury attorney at The Caruthers Law Firm fits that bill precisely. We have earned accolades and trust from our clients because we don not just handle cases; we champion causes. Our cases frequently involve traumatic, life-altering events, such as the loss of a loved one, and our relentless pursuit of justice ensures our clients receive the compensation necessary to secure their financial future. Our dedicated efforts have successfully secured over $50 million in settlements for our clients, and our commitment to excellence has brought us national recognition, particularly in fields like birth injury law. Whether your life has been upended by a tragic accident or the negligence of another party, you can confide in Caruthers Law Firm to handle your case with the utmost skill, dedication, and compassion in your time of need. Every case we undertake is treated with the gravity and importance it deserves, and we strive to provide the best possible representation to our clients. At Caruthers Law Firm, our attorneys boast an impressive array of knowledge and expertise in various practice areas, including personal injury, criminal defense, wrongful death, and more. We fully acknowledge that each case is unique, and we value the individual concerns and needs of our clients. This understanding leads us to craft tailored legal strategies that address each case is distinctive challenges. When you choose Caruthers Law Firm as your legal representation, you can expect a high degree of professionalism, unwavering integrity, and an unparalleled commitment from the beginning of your case to its conclusion. We are not just lawyers; we are advocates for your rights, dedicated to securing the justice you deserve.

For over three decades, Beverly R. Caruthers has been on an unwavering mission to provide her clients with top-notch, tenacious, and compassionate legal services and representation. Attorney Beverly R. Caruthers has not only amassed extensive experience but has also consistently delivered high-quality legal assistance to those who have sought her counsel. Her journey to legal expertise began with academic distinction, having graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts from Tougaloo College, followed by the acquisition of her Juris Doctor from Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University. With a primary focus on Personal Injury, Criminal Law, and Business Law, Attorney Beverly R. Caruthers has honed her legal acumen in these pivotal areas. Complementing her knowledge and skills, The Law Office of Beverly R. Caruthers is fortified by a collaborative team of seasoned and highly qualified attorneys. Together, they work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcomes for each and every client they serve. In the Caruthers family, the pursuit of legal excellence seems to be a cherished tradition. Briona Caruthers, following in the footsteps of her older brother and colleague, hails from Missouri City, Texas, where she graduated from Elkins High School in 2015. Venturing outside her hometown, she spent four years at Hofstra University in New York, where she diligently earned her Bachelor Degree in Legal Studies in Business in 2019. After her academic journey in New York, she returned to her roots in Houston, Texas. There, she attended the same illustrious institution where her mother, Beverly R. Caruthers, and her brothers, Eddie and Parker Caruthers, had studied—the Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University. In 2022, Briona graduated Cum Laude from TSU, thereby continuing the family legacy. Beyond her legal pursuits, Briona finds solace in retail therapy and enjoys exploring the world through her travels when she is not in the office, fervently advocating for her clients rights. Parker Caruthers, another member of the Caruthers family, was born and raised in Missouri City, Texas, where he completed his high school education at Clements High School in 2012. His educational journey took him to Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing in 2017. Parker commitment to legal studies led him to the Thurgood Marshall School of Law at TSU, from where he graduated in 2021. During his time in law school, Parker legal prowess shone through as he secured victory in the Helen Dawn Williams Mock Trial competition, all while gaining valuable experience through internships at the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. Opting to take a different path by not pursuing prosecution, Parker joined Caruthers Law Firm in 2021. Beyond the legal realm, Parker passions extend to sports fandom and his role as a proud dog owner. At the Caruthers Law Firm, we take a refreshingly transparent and candid approach when assessing our potential clients circumstances. We believe in clear, honest, and direct communication, leaving aside the legal jargon to speak in terms that our clients can readily understand. Each client is treated as a unique individual, receiving personalized and attentive care throughout their legal journey with us.

We are immensely grateful to each and every individual who wholeheartedly contributed to the success of "The Christmas Toy Drive and Giveaway" and "The Back to School Giveaway" right here in the vibrant city of Houston. Your support has made a profound difference in the lives of countless local children, and it is a testament to the incredible community spirit that defines our city. At The Caruthers Law Firm, we take great pride in being active sponsors of these important initiatives, which focus on providing crucial resources to Houstons youth. Some of the recipients come from families struggling with limited income, making it challenging for them to provide the necessary school supplies for their children. For others, the prospect of a joyous Christmas was a distant dream due to a lack of toys. In these circumstances, we aimed to make a meaningful and positive impact on these children and their families. It is through the unwavering support and dedication of our local community that we were able to realize this vision. We encourage you to consider joining us in this noble cause and be a part of the change in the lives of Houston families. Your involvement can take various forms, whether through donating items, contributing funds, or taking the initiative to organize a collection drive within your organization, church, club, or local community. Your support will undoubtedly go a long way in touching the lives of those in need, ensuring that every child in our city can look forward to a brighter future. By working together, we not only provide essential items but also instill a sense of hope, compassion, and generosity within our beloved Houston community. Together, we can create a stronger, more caring, and inclusive community, one that continues to uplift and empower those who need it most. Thank you for being a part of this vital mission.

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