Every Texas driver must have car insurance coverage to operate a vehicle under state law. The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) requires insurance companies to provide a specific type of coverage known as uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This policy applies when you suffer injuries or property damage in a car accident where the at-fault driver either has no insurance or their policy limits don’t cover all your expenses.
If you find yourself experiencing financial problems because an uninsured or underinsured motorist hit your car, you might want to visit with an Austin uninsured car accident lawyer. They can help you better understand the process of recovering compensation from your insurance company or in a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver. Call the team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today at (800) 598-7557 for a free case evaluation.
Mandatory Auto Insurance Coverage Limits in Texas
While not every motorist follows the law, Texas Transportation Code §601.051 is clear. Every motorist must establish financial responsibility for their vehicle—typically by carrying a minimum amount of car insurance coverage (liability coverage)—to operate it legally on the roadways. A valid auto insurance policy must include the following minimum coverages:
- $30,000 for bodily injury to one person in one accident
- $60,000 for bodily injury to two people in one accident
- $25,000 for property damage
For a free legal consultation with a uninsured car accidents lawyer serving Austin, call 800-598-7557
Uninsured Motorist Insurance Coverage in Texas
It is important to remember that if a motorist fails to have appropriate car insurance coverage, and an investigation determines that they were the negligent party in an accident, a victim has the legal right to file a claim directly against the negligent party in a court of law. Unfortunately, many motorists who fail to have car insurance often do not have enough income or assets to pay for a victim’s injuries and losses out-of-pocket.
For this reason, the Texas legislature in 2005 added Texas Insurance Code §1952.101 to handle these situations. The statute requires insurance companies to offer uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage as part of every auto policy. A driver can opt out of purchasing this coverage but must do so in writing.
Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage allows accident victims to seek compensation for their injuries and losses under this policy if the at-fault driver:
- Does not carry liability insurance in violation of the law.
- Has liability insurance with insufficient limits to pay claims arising from the accident.
If a motorist realizes that the negligent party does not have enough insurance to reimburse them for their medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering, they might choose to file a claim with their insurance company. They also can file a lawsuit against the negligent driver. An Austin uninsured car accident lawyer can help you with the process either way. Call Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today to learn more.
Austin Uninsured Car Accident Lawyer Near Me 800-598-7557
Steps to Take Following a Car Accident with an Uninsured Driver
If you find yourself involved in a car crash with an uninsured driver, you should take the following steps to protect your legal options.
Determine the Amount of Your Uninsured Coverage
If you accepted uninsured driver coverage, review your policy to determine your specific coverage limits accurately. You should not merely take the word of an insurance representative you speak to over the phone, but rather examine your policy yourself. You can request a copy of your insurance policy to know for sure your levels of coverage. Look at the section within your policy that explains your coverages concerning uninsured or underinsured motorists to determine the specific amount of coverage you have a legal right to receive.
Obtain a Copy of the Police Report
In all car accident cases, victims should request and receive an official copy of the police report regarding their collision. This critical piece of evidence can help a victim show that the other driver was the negligent party. When pursuing compensation, proving liability for injuries and losses related to the accident is a critical component.
Receive Medical Attention
Additionally, a victim should receive a proper medical evaluation and treatment for any injuries suffered in their car accident. If you suffered any injuries and have not yet received medical attention, you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Receiving a medical evaluation allows a victim to have a concrete record proving that their injuries related to the accident, as well as ensuring their health remains protected.
Keep in mind that if you develop new or worsening symptoms after receiving a medical evaluation, you should return to your health care provider for additional assessment regarding your condition.
Contact Your Insurance Company
After any car accident, you should contact your insurance company. However, in cases where the negligent party does not carry insurance coverage, you will have to look to your uninsured motorist coverage to compensate for your injuries and losses. As a result, you may find yourself in an adversarial position with your insurance company.
Simply because your insurance company covers you does not ensure that the process to receive compensation will be a smooth and painless one. Consider visiting with an Austin uninsured car accident lawyer to learn how they can negotiate on your behalf with your insurance company to recover the settlement you deserve for your damages.
Consider How an Austin Uninsured Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You Following Your Accident
You may find yourself feeling overwhelmed following a car accident in which the negligent driver does not carry legally required car insurance coverage. You might want to consider visiting with an Austin uninsured car accident lawyer to understand your legal rights and determine the amount of compensation you could recover for your medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Keep in mind that under Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code §16.003, you have two years to file a personal injury lawsuit. You can start the process toward recovering the compensation you need by calling the team at Ben Crump Law, PLLC, today at (800) 598-7557 for a free case review.