You’ve already suffered a traumatic event; you’ve been seriously injured in a car crash. Now, as you try to get a fair recovery for the injuries that were caused by someone else’s negligence, you learn that the negligent driver didn’t even have car insurance.
This can be terrifying, and it happens more frequently than you might think. Even though auto insurance is required by Kentucky law, more than 15% of Kentucky drivers are uninsured, according to the most recent information from the Insurance Information Institute.
The Insurance Every Driver Is Supposed to Have in Kentucky
Every state has its own laws for the requirement of car insurance and the minimum limits you must have for coverage. In Kentucky, the minimum amount of insurance that is required for each car owner is:
- $25,000 for bodily injury liability per person per accident.
- $50,000 for all bodily injury liability in a single accident.
- $10,000 for property damage in a single accident.
Car owners who fail to purchase the required insurance may have their vehicle registrations revoked, may be required to pay fines, and may face jail time. Unfortunately, that does not mean that all car owners purchase the legally required insurance coverage.
The vast majority of uninsured drivers lack the income and the assets to pay for significant medical expenses, lost income, and other damages after a car accident. Thus, if you are hurt by an uninsured driver, then you may be the one who has to pay the consequences even if you weren’t the one who caused the accident. This can be financially devastating.
You May Be Able to Look to Your Own Insurance
If you have uninsured motorist coverage as part of your own car insurance policy, then your insurance company may be responsible for paying your damages. This coverage can be the difference between a fair settlement for your damages and being stuck with remaining medical bills and losses left unpaid due to lack of insurance coverage.
However, even though it is your insurance company and you are the one who pays the premiums, your insurance company now has a goal that is opposed to yours. Your insurance company—like all insurance companies—profits by paying out as little as possible in claims. Accordingly, your insurance company wants to pay you as little as you will accept for your accident injuries even if you did not cause the accident.
Of course, uninsured motorist coverage is only applicable to your situation and can only help you with your recovery if you had purchased it prior to the crash. When you go to purchase your Kentucky car insurance policy, you are typically including uninsured motorist coverage. If you don’t want to purchase uninsured motorist coverage, then you must knowingly reject or reduce this coverage by filling out the appropriate paperwork. This extra coverage can be the difference between a fair settlement and being left to pay your own accident costs. If you have any questions about whether your car insurance policy includes uninsured motorist coverage you can look at the terms of the policy, you can talk to your insurance agent (not your adjuster), or you can contact an experienced personal injury lawyer.
Don’t Let Someone Else’s Lack of Insurance Mean Your Financial Ruin
You can’t change the actions of others—you couldn’t avoid the collision that hurt you and you couldn’t require the other driver to carry insurance. However, you can remain in control of your own recovery. Specifically, you can make sure that you are treated fairly by your own insurance company and that you get the uninsured motorist benefits that you paid for when you purchased your policy.
As with any accident injury case, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. You have a limited amount of time to pursue a car accident case and evidence may be easier to gather soon after your crash. To learn more about your rights and to schedule your own free, no-obligation consultation, we encourage you to contact us via this website or by phone any time.