Accidents with Uninsured or Underinsured Motorists: Legal Advice
Have you been in a car wreck with an uninsured or underinsured driver? Lack of appropriate insurance coverage can complicate accident claims, making it harder to secure compensation and potentially leading to legal challenges. Knowing how to proceed is vital. As a lawyer, I'm glad to offer my insight from my years of case work.
Our law offices in Sugar Land, Richmond, and Katy, TX, handle many car accident claims each year. We offer essential guidance and a free case review for those who've been in a serious car accident in the Houston area. We provide the information you need to navigate these situations effectively.
Minimum Insurance Requirements in Texas
The state of Texas requires you to establish "financial responsibility" to cover damages associated with motor vehicle accidents. This financial responsibility can be established in various ways, but for most people, obtaining at least the minimum insurance requirements is the most cost-efficient way to establish this responsibility to the government. Minimum liability insurance coverage required since 2011 is:
- $30,000 for bodily injury to or death of one person in one accident.
- $60,000 for bodily injury to or death of two or more persons in one accident.
- $25,000 for damage to or destruction of property of others in one accident.
About the 30/60/25 Limits
These minimum requirements are often referred to as the "30/60/25" limits. While these are the legal minimums, many drivers opt for higher coverage to ensure adequate protection in the event of a serious accident.
Failure to have the required insurance coverage can result in fines, penalties, and potential legal consequences. Additionally, uninsured motorists can face personal financial liability for damages and injuries in an accident they cause.
What to Do If You’re an Uninsured or Underinsured Driver Who's Been in a Crash
For uninsured drivers in an auto accident, the responsibility falls on you to cover any damages caused. Without insurance to help cover expenses, the financial burden of damages and potential legal fees can become a significant challenge. This highlights the importance of having coverage, as the lack of insurance can lead to higher accident-related costs.
While this may seem like all hope is lost if you're uninsured or underinsured, consulting with a legal professional specializing in car accident injuries can help you understand your legal obligations and explore potential options for reducing costs. Here are a few ways our lawyers can help you reduce costs associated with motor vehicle accidents as an uninsured or underinsured driver:
Mediation is a process where a neutral third party, such as one of our lawyers, helps both parties involved in the accident reach a settlement. This can often be a more affordable and amicable way to resolve disputes when you don’t have insurance.
Check for Errors
Our lawyers can review the accident report and any cost estimates for potential errors or discrepancies that could be corrected, potentially reducing the overall costs.
Explore Financial Assistance
Our lawyers can help you explore local and national programs or organizations that offer financial assistance to those dealing with unexpected expenses, including accident-related costs. Our lawyers can also help you negotiate payment plans to get you a low-interest plan that works for your budget.
Experience Peace of Mind
Having a lawyer by your side can provide peace of mind during an otherwise challenging time. They can answer your questions, provide guidance, and handle the legal complexities on your behalf. Having a lawyer to help you through this process ensures that you aren’t missing out on any coverage just by lack of knowledge or understanding of the insurance and legal processes.
What to Do If the Other Driver in a Crash Is Uninsured or Underinsured
Texas is an at-fault state for car accidents, which means the driver found responsible for causing the accident is liable for the resulting damages and injuries. This can lead to complications if the at-fault driver is uninsured. Even with proper auto insurance, you can end up with minimal compensation from the other party, leaving you responsible for your medical bills, property repairs, and other costs caused by the uninsured or underinsured motorist.
"If the driver isn’t willing to cooperate with mediation, a lawsuit might be an efficient way to seek compensation directly from the driver."
Consulting a car accident attorney is highly recommended to secure fair compensation. We can help you understand the best course of action based on the specifics of your case. We can also guide you through the legal process and protect your rights. These are a few ways our law firm can help you obtain compensation from the uninsured or underinsured motorist:
- Discuss Options With Your Insurance - Our attorneys can look into your insurance policy for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. We can file a claim with your insurance for compensation if you have this coverage and negotiate with your insurance providers to get you a fair payment.
- Negotiate and Mediate - Negotiation and mediation can be a great way to discuss a fair agreement between you and the uninsured or underinsured driver before taking legal action.
- File a Lawsuit - If you’ve suffered injuries or damages from an uninsured/underinsured motorist, you can file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver. If the driver isn’t willing to cooperate with mediation, a lawsuit might be an efficient way to seek compensation directly from the driver.
It Costs Nothing to Ask: We Offer Free Case Reviews
As lawyers for many years, we understand how stressful and confusing it can be to obtain compensation after an accident involving an uninsured/underinsured driver. We also understand the anxiety of being an uninsured/underinsured driver in a car accident.
No matter where you fall, we offer free case reviews to help you start exploring your legal options.
If we decide full legal action is necessary to obtain fair compensation, we work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t pay us unless we recover damages for you.
Get the Help You Need
Contact Our Law Firm Today
Achieve peace of mind and clarity about where you stand in an accident involving an uninsured/underinsured driver by contacting our firm. Message us today to request a free consultation.
About Jackson R. Reed
Attorney Jackson R. Reed has served clients since 1994. He is a member of the American Trial Lawyers Association (ATLA), the Texas Trial Lawyers Association (TTLA), the Houston Trial Lawyers Association (HTLA), and the State Bar of Texas.