How to Deal with an Accident with an Uninsured Driver

The screeching tires. The sound of metal on metal. The sudden thrust forward and backward. Car crashes are scary and dangerous, and getting in one comes with a whole slew of problems on its own. The standard practice after an accident is to exchange insurance information with the other driver, but what do you do when the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance?

  1. Call Emergency Services

You always call the police to an accident scene, especially when there are potential injuries and significant property damage. However, you do not always need to call 911. If there are no life-threatening injuries, then try calling the police department directly.

  1. Collect Information

While the other driver does not have insurance, you still need to collect contact information. You will want to get their name and phone number and any necessary vehicle information. Also, if there are witnesses to the accident, ask if they are willing to give you their name and contact information.

  1. Do Not Accept Money

The other driver may try giving you money to avoid the ordeal. Do not accept it. Most likely, the driver is trying to avoid legal penalties and further financial hardship. Most states require drivers to have auto insurance, and if the at-fault party has none, they are operating illegally.

  1. Document the Scene

If you have your phone on you and it can take videos or pictures like most smart devices, be sure to take snapshots of the scene. You want to document the damage to both vehicles and any injuries sustained. 

  1. Use Your Uninsured Motorist Policy

Some insurers offer uninsured motorist protection. If your policy has this coverage, then use it. If not, you may need to find other ways to pay for the damage and any injuries that occurred.

  1. Consider Your Options

Many people choose to sue after a car wreck to try to recover some of their financial losses. Unfortunately, suing an uninsured driver may not be worth it. While you may take the individual to court and win your claim, if they do not have the money for insurance, then they likely do not have the funds to settle or pay any judgment. A car crash with an uninsured driver may be one of those instances when you just have to take the hand that was dealt you.

If you were in a car accident with an uninsured motorist, then you are not entirely out of options. Contact a lawyer, like a car accident lawyer in Des Moines, IA from Johnston Martineau, LLP,  for advice.