What Do You Do If The Other Driver Is Uninsured?

No one enjoys getting into a traffic accident, especially where damage to the car is involved and there’s no way to avoid the expense of repairs. But at the very least, the protocol for handling a traffic accident is very well documented, and, according to the law, drivers are required to have automobile insurance. This means that in the event of an accident it is—at least in theory—up to the insurance companies involved to handle the finances of repair and compensation once blamed has been properly assigned.

However, there is one far more complex and nightmarish scenario that every Florida driver faces, and that is getting into an accident with someone that doesn’t have insurance.

Illegal Driving

Of course, according to the law, all drivers MUST have auto insurance before getting behind the wheel of a car. But in theory, no driver should drive drunk, all drivers must wear seatbelts, and no driver is supposed to text their friends while driving, and all of these things happen despite laws being in place to dissuade these activities. Uninsured drivers are no different and, unfortunately, the state of Florida has one of the higher instances of uninsured drivers in the country. When Florida drivers take to the road and get in a traffic accident, there is actually a one in five chance that the person they get into the accident with has no auto insurance.

If this should happen to you, what are your options?

Financial Preparations

Every insurance company in Florida is legally required to make you aware of the offer for uninsured motorist insurance. This means that even if you get into an accident with someone that has no insurance, your insurance company will still cover the financial losses. However, while the insurance company is legally bound to offer you this protection, you are NOT required to accept it.

If you do not accept it, you must now contend with the fact Florida is a “no fault state” when it comes to traffic accidents. In Florida, this means that insurance will automatically cover up to $10000 in car or property damage, with no need to take the case to court. Florida, however, does not have any kind of requirements for insurance for bodily damage, meaning that it is up to drivers themselves to decide to take on that kind of coverage.

Your Legal Options

This is where things become extremely tricky. If the other driver does not have any kind of insurance, and the damage to your automobile or property falls under $10000, then you may not even have the option to go to court. Even if the damage to exceeds those limits, or there is an injury or even death involved, the fact that the driver at fault has no insurance is a strong indicator that even if you win the case, there is a chance you may never recover the monetary damages, or there may be options for a very slow recovery of the money through the garnishing of wages, and only if the person’s salary can bear the garnishing.

In short, if you get into an accident with an uninsured driver, a car crash lawyer may be able to help you win a case in court against the offender, but there’s a chance that this will be an empty victory with no financial compensation.