What to do if you are hit by an uninsured driver [checklist]

uninsured car driver at a scene of an accident

(Image Credit: flickr.com)

Being involved in a car crash is bad enough, but discovering you’ve been hit by an uninsured driver can make it feel even worse. Automobile liability insurance is created to protect all parties involved in an accident. When an uninsured driver causes an accident, it leaves you, the innocent driver, in a position of uncertainty.

In Mississippi there are regulations all drivers should follow.  From January 2001, it was required for all drivers to have insurance and carry a card in their vehicle at all times to prove they are insured. This card can be in paper or electronic format.

From January 2006, the minimum liability requirements increased to 25/50/25:

  • $25,000 per person
  • $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
  • $25,000 per accident for property damage

When you’ve been involved in an accident, your insurance protects you from any major financial loss.

In a 2009 study by the Insurance Research Council, an estimated 28% of drivers in Mississippi did not have liability insurance. This was the highest in the entire country.

So, what do you do if you’ve been hit by an uninsured driver?

Being hit by a driver who doesn’t have liability insurance can be troublesome, but there are things you can do to make sure you don’t end up suffering the financial repercussions.

1. Get information from the driver

Once you find out the guilty driver doesn’t have car insurance, you should not leave the scene of the accident. There is important information you still need to get from the driver, such as:

  • Full name
  • License number
  • Contact details (phone number and address)
  • Car registration
  • Car make and model details

Before you leave the driver, try calling their number to make sure they have given you a real number.

It doesn’t always happen but some uninsured drivers are difficult to track down after an accident. Getting as much information as you can, can help you contact them again and pass the information on to your lawyers or insurance company.

2. Take pictures of the accident

Never forget to take pictures of the accident. This is crucial evidence for your insurance company (and your legal team if you decide to take legal action).

Take pictures of all the cars involved in the accident and take pictures of the registration numbers. It helps to take pictures of the area, like road conditions, weather and other circumstances that could have played a role in your traffic accident.

3. Call the police

When you’re dealing with an uninsured driver, it’s worthwhile to call the police. It gives you extra documentation when dealing with your insurance claim later.

The police will report the incident and this report will support your insurance claim. In Mississippi, it is illegal to drive without liability insurance and while you might not want to get the uninsured driver into trouble, they have broken the law by driving without insurance.

4. Speak to witnesses

Getting contact details from witnesses at the accident will support your claim against the uninsured driver. Pedestrians and other drivers who saw the accident are excellent examples of witnesses. You can use family and friends as witnesses but they know you so it’s best to find people who don’t know you and have an unbiased view of the accident.

5. Get legal advice

While you will want to contact your insurance company at this point, it is advisable to get legal advice first.

Insurance companies are designed to protect you from financial loss but they will try to limit the amount of money you will get paid back. Getting legal assistance will help you get the amount of money you deserve.

Having a lawyer means you can build a legal case against the uninsured driver if they refuse to pay for any damages.

6. Tell your insurance company

Do you have uninsured or underinsured driver coverage? This coverage gives you extra protection if you have an accident involving an uninsured driver. If you already have this coverage, it can help you claim compensation for any damages or injuries you’ve suffered.

If you don’t have uninsured/underinsured driver coverage then make sure you get legal advice before telling your insurance company. You must inform your insurance company about the accident, but you don’t want to say anything that could negatively affect your claim.

Get help from attorneys experienced in traffic accident law

It’s bad enough being involved in a car accident because of a negligent or dangerous driver, but finding out they are uninsured can cause extra stress. Having legal help on your side will help ensure you don’t end up having to pay for an accident that wasn’t your fault.

If you’re dealing with an uninsured driver and need legal help, our personal injury attorneys at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC, will be able to give you advice on how to proceed. Give us a call on (877) 231-1600 or submit a contact form.

This worksheet will help you record everything you need about your case:

car accident claim document

Disclaimer: This blog is intended as general information purposes only, and is not a substitute for legal advice. Anyone with a legal problem should consult a lawyer immediately.

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