Unfortunately, the situation is not uncommon in Georgia, where over 12% of motorists drive without auto insurance. Under Georgia law, all drivers of motor vehicles must carry a minimum of $25,000 in liability insurance (O.C.G.A. § 33-7-11).
While the vast majority of Georgia motorists are law-abiding citizens who purchase auto insurance, many drivers do not have the minimum required insurance.
But what happens if you are in a car accident caused by an uninsured driver in Georgia? Can you still recover damages if you get hit by an uninsured motorist?
The answer depends on who was at fault and what insurance policies are available. It is advisable to seek legal counsel if you are involved in a car crash with an uninsured driver. Contact our car accident attorneys at Hoffspiegel Law if you were hit by a driver without insurance.
How to Recover Damages in a Car Accident with an Uninsured Driver?
Following a car accident, drivers must exchange insurance information with all other parties involved in the crash. If you find out that the at-fault driver does not have auto insurance, you may be able to recover damages through:
- Your uninsured motorist (UM) coverage. UM is optional insurance coverage that provides additional protection in the event of hit-and-run crashes and accidents involving uninsured drivers.
- Med pay and health insurance. You may be able to use your medical payments coverage (med pay) and health insurance to cover some of your medical expenses resulting from an accident with an insured motorist.
- Collision coverage. This type of insurance coverage will pay for the cost of repairing or replacing your motor vehicle regardless of fault. It can be used even if the other driver does not have auto insurance.
What Happens if I Don’t Have Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage?
If you are hit by a driver without insurance but do not have uninsured motorist coverage, your options for recovering damages are limited. You may be able to use your collision coverage, but it only pays for the damage to your vehicle.
You need to consult with an experienced attorney to determine if you can use your med pay and health insurance to cover your medical bills.
What Happens if I Have Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage?
In that case, everything is less complicated. If you do have uninsured motorist coverage, you can make a claim with your own auto insurance policy to seek compensation for your medical expenses and property damage.
However, in order to recover damages through the UM coverage, you must do the following:
- Provide an accident report to your insurance company; and
- Demonstrate evidence of physical contact between your car and the vehicle of the uninsured motorist.
The second element may not be necessary if you have witnesses who can verify how your accident occurred. Uninsured motorist coverage can also be used if you were hit by a driver who fled the scene of the crash.
Speak with an Atlanta Car Accident Attorney
If you have been hit by an uninsured, underinsured, or hit-and-run driver in Atlanta, do not hesitate to consult with a knowledgeable attorney to discuss your options. At Hoffspiegel Law, we are committed to helping you recover damages regardless of fault. Speak with our Atlanta car accident attorneys by calling (404) 760-8600.