Getting Help With A Lawyer

Involved In An Auto Accident? What If Their Insurance Doesn't Cover Your Expenses?

Car accidents can be serious occurrences with lasting and costly effects. If you have been involved in a car accident that you did not cause, it is important for you to seek restitution from the at-fault party instead of trying to pay for it yourself. The first logical path for restitution is a claim with the other driver's insurance company. But what happens when their insurance policy limits are too low to cover your damages? Here's a look at what you need to know.

Determine Their Insurance Coverage Limits

Every auto insurance policy has liability coverage limits. These limits detail how much the company can pay per person as well as per claim for injuries and damage done to any property, such as your vehicle. 

An insurance policy with $50,000/$100,000/$10,000 limits will cover up to $50,000 in injuries to one individual and as much as $100,000 per claim for all individuals involved. It will also cover up to $10,000 in property damage.

What happens, though, when your car is totaled and it's worth well more than that $10,000 property damage limit?

Look At Your Own Insurance Coverage

While you shouldn't have to file a claim on your own insurance policy for an accident you did not cause, sometimes your own policy is the best fallback when the liable individual has insufficient coverage.

Contact your insurance company to see if you have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage on your policy. This coverage is designed for these exact situations. Expressed in the same type of coverage limits, you may have coverage such as $50,000/$100,000 which means it will pay up to $50,000 of overage per person or vehicle and up to $100,000 per claim for multiple drivers or vehicles.

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage will help you to cover the gaps in the medical or property damage costs beyond what the liable driver's coverage limits restrict. This could be your best option to ensure that you get the repairs or medical care coverage that you need and don't have to pay out of pocket for those costs.

Consider An Auto Accident Court Claim

Whether you don't really want to involve your own insurance policy or you know the other driver and are certain that they have means to compensate you for your expenses, you may decide that it's time to consider filing a court claim for the money that you feel you are owed. In many cases, you can get a court order requiring the liable individual to cover all of your costs.

Before you decide to file any kind of court case, though, you should talk with an auto accident attorney. He or she can help you to determine what the best course of action is to increase your chances of success with the claim.

Based on the evidence from the accident and the paperwork from the other party's insurance company, you can show that the money you received is not sufficient to cover the actual expenses that you have incurred. In those situations, you might be able to obtain the difference directly from the liable individual.

Before you make any decision about pursuing your own insurance coverage or filing a court claim, you should schedule a consultation with a car accident attorney. This consultation will give you the chance to explain to him or her what the situation is, how much money you are still in need of to offset your costs, and what kind of options you have for your own insurance coverage to foot the bill. That way, he or she can give you an educated, legal recommendation for the best course of action. The better prepared you are, the easier it will be for you to get the money that you deserve.