Suing an Uninsured Driver for Damages

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What You Should Do After a Car Accident with an Uninsured Driver

Uninsured driver

Are you thinking about suing an uninsured driver for damages?  South Carolina imposes a minimum liability insurance requirement for motorists, but not everyone is a responsible driver. In 2019, approximately 11% of drivers in the state did not have insurance[1]. Some experts believe this number is rising due to inflation and rising cost.  So, what should you do if a driver without insurance hits your vehicle? Considering the number of uninsured motorists on South Carolina roads, it’s worth being prepared with this information.  Below I will discuss suing an uninsured driver for damages.

What Does the Law Say about Suing an Uninsured Driver for Damages?

South Carolina requires drivers to carry liability insurance[2]. This type of insurance protects the insured person from claims associated with accidents that they cause. For example, if you are at fault for an accident, your liability insurance would cover claims from the other driver for things like their medical expenses and lost wages. Coverage amounts for this liability insurance are set at a minimum of $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for total bodily injury for one accident, and $25,000 in property damage liability for one accident[3].

Uninsured motorist insurance is also required in South Carolina[4]. This coverage should be equal to the amount of the minimum liability coverage. With uninsured motorist insurance, your provider will cover the costs associated with an accident caused by a driver without insurance.

South Carolina law also requires drivers to carry proof of financial responsibility, which means proof of insurance for the vast majority of motorists. State law says that drivers are required to maintain proof in the vehicle that it is insured[5].

What Should You Do?

uninsured wreck

Many of the steps you should take after an accident with an uninsured driver are the same as with an insured driver. Follow the protocol for contacting emergency services, staying on the scene, and seeking medical attention for your injuries. Your insurer likely requires notification of accidents within a reasonable or specific period of time. If you do not notify them of your accident, they may decide to deny your claim. However, keep in mind that speaking with an insurance provider should be done carefully.

It may seem like they are there to help you during this difficult time; but claims adjusters and other insurance representatives will typically look for ways to save the company money. This could mean paying you less for your claim. If you are concerned that your insurance company is not offering you appropriate compensation or if they deny your claim, you may want to speak with a car accident attorney in West Columbia, South Carolina, who can help you.

Burnside Law Firm has extensive experience with cases involving uninsured motorists and car insurance claims. We can negotiate with insurers, file a demand letter, help you with every part of your claims process, or even sue that uninsured driver! Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

[1] Insurance Information Institute. https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-uninsured-motorists

[2] South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles. https://www.dmv.org/sc-south-carolina/car-insurance.php#:~:text=In%20South%20Carolina%2C%20you%20must%20have%20the%20following,%2450%2C000%20for%20bodily%20injury%20or%20death%20per%20accident.

[3] South Carolina Department of Insurance. https://doi.sc.gov/588/Automobile-Insurance

[4] Ibid.

[5] South Carolina Code of Laws. Section 56-10-225. https://www.scstatehouse.gov/code/t56c010.php

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