The latest statistics on uninsured motorists driving around the State of Texas are at a shocking ± 20% - which equate to roughly 4 million drivers.
While this may seem an unbelievable fact, (Realistically, who would consider driving around without insurance coverage in this day and age?) most of the Texan population does not fully comprehend the legal and financial implications that ensue after a collision with an uninsured driver.
It is a well-known fact that Texas is a pro-insurance state and one who will make you fall to your knees to collect what is rightfully yours. Adding Uninsured & Underinsured Motorist coverage (UM/UIM) to your auto insurance policy ensures you have some sort of protection.
Here are some pointers to follow up if you were hit by an uninsured driver:
● Forewarned is Forearmed - check your insurance policy coverage to see if you’re covered against uninsured and underinsured motorists.
● The policy covers the policyholder, their family members, passengers in the vehicle, and anyone who drives the vehicle with the permission of the owner.
● It is your insurance company’s responsibility to investigate the claim against an uninsured/underinsured motorist.
● You may have an all-out war with your service provider when filing your claim and may need to retain the services of a lawyer to have your claim fulfilled.
● Your policy should cover a variety of expenses to their limit including medical and/or funeral, repairing the vehicle or replacing lost goods, and personal injury.
Call the police to the scene of the accident. This is prudent for a number of reasons including having the accident documented by an officer as well as avoiding a scam artist.
If you do not have UM/UIM coverage on your policy, check whether the at-fault driver has no insurance coverage. It is not often, but it does happen at times and we have seen it, where some insurance companies deny coverage to avoid paying even though there is coverage, so check and double check. Ask for an official letter documenting their answer as an oral statement may be denied outright at a later stage.
One of the questions that usually crops up in these cases relates to suing an uninsured/underinsured driver. What are the odds you will win in court, and if you do, how can you be sure of receiving payment owed to you?
The court may find you in favor of receiving payment but, and here’s the irony, you may receive nothing at all if you had no UM/UIM coverage.