Georgia law requires all drivers to purchase insurance coverage. Unfortunately, some drivers ignore this rule or let their insurance lapse. In fact, according to the Insurance Information Institute, about 13 percent of motorists in the United States were uninsured in 2015. Twelve percent of Georgia drivers were uninsured. When these irresponsible drivers cause an accident, victims are often left wondering how they can possibly cover their accident-related damages.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in an accident with an uninsured driver, recovering the compensation you need can be difficult. An uninsured motorist accident lawyer in Atlanta can help you explore your options. Call S. Burke Law today: 404-842-7838.
How Can I Recover the Compensation I Need to Pay for My Injuries?
Georgia law requires all insurers to offer policyholders uninsured motorist, or UM, coverage. This coverage activates when you are in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist. While Georgia law does not require UM coverage, you must reject it in writing. So, in many cases, drivers have UM coverage and do not even realize it.
UM coverage is highly valuable in the following cases:
- An accident with a driver who does not have insurance
- An accident with a driver who has insurance, but whose coverage is not enough to compensate your damages. This is also known as Underinsured Motorist coverage.
- Hit and run accidents where law enforcement cannot locate the at-fault driver
What Can I Recover from My UM Policy?
What you can recover depends on what type of UM policy you have. Two types of policies exist:
- UMBI: Uninsured motorist bodily injury
- UMPD: Uninsured motorist property damage
Your UM policy is equal to the limits of your bodily injury liability policy. Per Georgia law, the minimum bodily injury liability policy all drivers must have is:
- $25,000 for bodily injury to one person
- $50,000 for bodily injury per incident
- $25,000 for property damage per incident
If you carry the minimum insurance, you would have $25,000 each for your injuries and property damage. If you had passengers in your car who also suffered injuries, you would split the $50,000 available.
Like liability expenses, S. Burke Law can claim compensation for the following damages:
- Medical expenses (e.g., ambulance costs, medication, therapists, surgeries, etc.)
- Lost wages (All wages lost due to time missed at work following an accident)
- Lost earning potential (i.e., wages you would have earned in the future if the accident did not occur)
- Pain and suffering
- Any repair or replacement costs related to the accident
Who Does a UM Policy Cover?
Your UM policy extends beyond yourself. Your UM policy also applies to the following people:
- Your spouse
- Relatives of your spouse if you live in the same home
- Your relatives if they live with you
- Anyone with using your vehicle with permission
- Passengers riding with you in your insured vehicle
What Do I Need to Do to Recover from My UM Policy?
As with any insurance matter, you must file a claim with your insurance company. In most cases, your insurance company will require a police report that proves the accident occurred.
Once you provide the insurer with your medical records, paystubs, and police report, and pay your deductible, the insurer should issue you a check for your losses. Unfortunately, it is rarely as easy as that. Even though you pay for this coverage, your insurer is often not on your side. Your insurance company is a business and wants to protect its bottom line. This means that it might deny your claim or offer you less than you deserve.
If you find yourself in this situation, the team at S. Burke Law can help. Sheryl Burke spent time as an insurance adjuster before opening her own personal injury firm. This experience and insider knowledge allows her to stay one step ahead of the insurer and get you the compensation you need for your injuries.
Do I Have Any Other Options for Compensation?
Not everyone carries UM coverage. If you do not carry coverage, you may be able to use your medical payments, or MedPay, coverage if you carry it.
If you do not have MedPay coverage, you may be able to use your health insurance coverage. However, many health insurance policies specify that car accident injuries are a coverage exemption.
The team at S. Burke Law will look into your case and determine the best options for compensation.
Call Now for a Free Consultation
Getting into an accident with an uninsured driver can be a complex, frustrating experience. However, you are not alone. The team at S. Burke Law is on your side from beginning to end. Call today to learn more about your options for compensation: 404-842-7838.