If you were injured in a car wreck in North Carolina and were not at fault, you or your attorney will likely start by contacting the at-fault driver’s insurance company. But what if it turns out that the at-fault driver did not have auto insurance? Perhaps they don’t even have a valid driver’s license, or maybe their insurance policy recently lapsed. Whatever the reason, you probably have a lot of questions about your options and what to do next.
Isn’t insurance required in North Carolina?
To drive a car in North Carolina, vehicle liability insurance is required, as is a valid driver’s license. Unfortunately, some people do not comply with these laws, so it is possible to end up injured in a wreck that involved an uninsured driver; however, if you have auto insurance, you are still protected.
How am I protected if an uninsured driver caused the car wreck?
If you have auto insurance in North Carolina, your own insurance policy includes something called uninsured motorist coverage (UM). This is insurance that protects you in case you are injured in a wreck caused by another driver who does not have insurance. The amount of this coverage can vary. In North Carolina, you are required to have at least $30,000 in liability coverage. This means you will also have $30,000 in uninsured coverage. Some states require more, and others require even less. (Note: Adding additional coverage can be more affordable than you might think. If you want to make sure you are well protected against uninsured drivers in the future, talk with your insurance agent about increasing your liability and uninsured insurance limits.)
How do I make a claim on my own insurance if the wreck wasn’t my fault?
Before you attempt to handle an uninsured claim on your own, talk with a personal injury law firm. At Burton Law Firm, we provide a free consultation. Talking with an attorney early on can help you avoid mistakes that could prevent you from successfully recovering all of the money to which you should be entitled for your injuries, medical bills, pain and suffering, and more.
At Burton Law Firm, we start by looking for all possible sources of insurance. For example, the driver who caused the wreck may have been driving someone else’s car that wasn’t insured, but it’s possible that they have their own auto policy. It is also possible that the at-fault driver lives with a family member and is listed on or covered by the family member’s insurance policy.
If we do not find any insurance associated with the driver or car that hit you, then we may have to make an uninsured claim on your own auto policy. If that happens, we will contact your auto insurance and start the claim. Some parts of your claim will be the same as if you were making a claim against the other driver, but other parts will be different. It is important to work with a lawyer who is familiar with uninsured claims so that you have the best chance of being fully compensated for all of your injuries, damages, and losses.
At Burton Law Firm, our personal injury attorneys have experience with uninsured claims. We understand how overwhelming it can be to find out that the other driver was uninsured, but we will be with you every step of the way. We’ll fight to help you recover what you’ve lost so that you, your loved ones, and your future are protected. If you or someone you know was injured in a wreck with an uninsured driver, give us a call today for your free consultation.