Learn about the limitations on compensation for uninsured drivers
Driving without proper car insurance is never a good idea. However, it does happen. Some drivers may be unable to afford car insurance, or they may accidentally let their coverage lapse. So what happens when an uninsured driver gets into a car accident? Can they still get compensation for car accident injuries?
The answer depends on who was at fault for the accident.
Uninsured Driver at Fault: Normally, a driver who causes an accident can seek compensation from their own insurance. Obviously, an uninsured driver who causes a car accident will not have the ability to this. In fact, they will actually be personally liable for any injuries suffered by the other parties involved in the accident.
Other Driver at Fault: If another driver hits an uninsured driver or otherwise causes an auto accident, the uninsured driver can make a claim against that driver’s insurance—assuming they have any. However, there will be limitations on their compensation that would not be present if they had had insurance.
Normally, after a car accident, victims can seek compensation for:
- Current and future medical bills
- Property damage to their vehicle
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Physical impairment
However, California law prevents uninsured drivers from recovering all of these types of damages. They can only recover economic damages. Non-economic damages like pain and suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, and physical impairment will not be considered when calculating their compensation. This is a big disadvantage because pain and suffering typically represents a significant portion of the compensation in any type of personal injury case.
DUI Driver at Fault: California law provides an exception for cases where a drunk or drug-impaired driver injures an uninsured driver. If the drunk driver is convicted of a DUI, the uninsured driver will be able to seek compensation for all the damages they have suffered, including non-economic damages.
Have You Been Injured in a Car Accident?
At The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker, we specialize in car accident injury claims. As the #1 car accident firm in southern California, we make an excellent choice of attorney for your case. We will fight for you to receive maximum compensation for your injuries and suffering. To learn more about working with us, call 800-333-0000 now for a free consultation.