Car accidents involving uninsured drivers are quite difficult since they leave victims needing to collect from their uninsured motorist coverage.
Even though auto insurance is mandatory in Missouri, one estimate shows that around 14% of drivers in the state do not have it. To increase protection, Missouri also requires drivers to carry uninsured motorist coverage with minimums set at:
- $25,000 per person
- $50,000 per accident
Car accidents involving uninsured drivers are quite difficult since they leave victims needing to collect from their uninsured motorist coverage, which many people don’t understand.
Let’s break it down.
How It Works
Uninsured motorist coverage coverage kicks in when the at-fault driver does not have any auto insurance, or when you are the victim of a hit and run. Under normal circumstances, you’d exchange insurance information with the other driver and file a claim with their insurance company to recover damages.
From a legal standpoint, this type of claim works just like any other car accident. But instead of contacting the at-fault driver’s company, you file a claim with your own company, the one that carries your uninsured motorist coverage.
The problem is since it is your company, it means you signed a contract with them, through which you essentially agree to their terms and conditions. This makes it a lot more difficult for car accident victims to negotiate, as there could be some contractual provisions that stipulate how you can recover these damages.
What Can You Do?
You need to carefully read your insurance policy. In some cases, companies may add some very strict rules as to how you can collect damages, such as very tight deadlines you have to respect.
Since it’s your insurance company, and you signed the contract and agreed to their terms, you have to follow these rules. Even if the local law gives you a lot more time to file a claim.
Then, there may be other procedural specifications you need to follow to ensure you get compensated. Many insurance companies will cling on to technicalities as a way to get away with not paying car accident victims a dime. At the end of the day, they are businesses that are interested in turning a profit. The less money they pay people, the better.
The golden rule is to call your insurance company as soon as you can to let them know about the accident.
It’s a Good Idea to Speak With an Attorney
Collecting through your uninsured motorist coverage can sometimes be more difficult than going up against an unfamiliar insurance company. To ensure you get properly compensated, reach out to a St. Louis car accident attorney and discuss the the specifics of your case.
A lawyer may be able to get the insurance company to budge through negotiations, and by building a strong case in your favor. Additionally, they can analyze your policy to see what would be the best option for you to collect damages.
Speak with an experienced attorney 24/7