If you have suffered damages or injury in a Rhode Island vehicle accident that was not your fault, you will likely file a claim with the responsible party’s insurance carrier. However, in some cases, the other driver was either under-insured or uninsured. While this might seem financially devastating, there is likely a solution through your own automobile insurance policy. You can probably file a claim with your own auto insurance company under a provision that covers you against uninsured motorists.
In all likelihood, your RI auto insurance policy has two specific provisions to cover you when other drivers have no insurance coverage or insufficient coverage. These provisions will provide you financial compensation for any bodily injury and/or property damage you suffered in the Providence vehicle accident.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
You are likely required to carry uninsured motorist coverage in the event that the driver responsible for causing your vehicle accident is not insured. Their lack of insurance is usually determined at the time of the accident, when the law enforcement officer is investigating the collision, gathering evidence and obtaining eyewitness accounts.
The Value of the Claim
Like any other claim for financial compensation, the insurance adjuster will likely offer an amount significantly lower than the value of your Rhode Island uninsured motorist claim. This is because the adjuster is trained to settle claims offering the least amount of compensation possible. Paying out the true value of the claim decreases the insurance carrier’s profitability.
As a result, it is a wise decision to hire a Rhode Island personal injury attorney specializing in uninsured motorist claims in RI. This is because the East providence car accident lawyer will use proven methods to determine the value of your claim to ensure you receive adequate compensation for your injuries and damages. The RI Personal injury lawyer will consider a variety of factors to determine the case’s value including:
• Is your primary injury temporary or permanent?
• Do you have single or multiple injuries?
• Did you suffer head injuries or brain trauma in the accident, which could cause neurological problems in the future?
• Have the injuries from the accident caused you debilitation or limit your ability to perform daily activities?
• Are you experiencing intense discomfort and pain due to your injuries?
• Do you have extensive ongoing medical expenses?
• Have you lost time at work and/or will in the future because of your accident injury?
• Where you visibly disfigured in the accident by burns or scars?
A skilled Providence uninsured motorist injury attorney will build the case to help you receive maximum recovery based on the limits of your policy. In addition, RI personal injury attorneys have extensive skills to maximize your compensation when negotiating with the claims adjuster for an out-of-court settlement or taking the case to trial in front of a judge and jury.
A skilled Rhode Island Accident lawyer can ensure that your own auto insurance company does not breach their contract to cover you for an uninsured motorist accident. Most RI Auto Accident attorneys will offer to take the case on contingency, avoiding the need for you to pay upfront fees.
In spite of the requirement in nearly all states including Rhode island and Massachusetts, millions of people still drive without insurance. According to the Insurance Research Council, the states with the highest numbers of uninsured motorist are California with approximately 4.1 million uninsured drivers, Florida with 3.2 million, and Texas with 1.6 million. Nearly 13 percent of all motorists are uninsured. That’s about 1 in 8. The following information describes the high cost of uninsured motorists, why so many are uninsured, and the legal problems associated with uninsured drivers.
The high cost of an uninsured motorist
The Pew Charitable Trusts states that costs for uninsured motorists totaled $2.6 billion in 2012. These costs, while primarily covered by insurance companies, are generally passed on to drivers who pay for insurance. These costs translate into higher premiums for other drivers. States including RI and MA have a variety of laws and procedures in place to deal with the high costs of uninsured drivers. However, many states do not have the resources to implement mandates and penalties. In some cases the bureaucracy involved in implementing penalties results in errors and computer glitches. Sometimes even law-abiding drivers get flagged and penalized unfairly.
Reasons for Uninsured Drivers
Staticbrain.com lists the demographics regarding uninsured drivers. Most are males in the 18 to 24 age bracket. They are also likely to earn less than $20,000 annually. With a struggling economy it’s easy to see why many people aren’t purchasing car insurance. Paying for premiums is one of the main reasons people don’t have auto insurance. A vehicle that is not in operating condition or one that is rarely used are other reasons people neglect to purchase insurance. According to AutoInsurance.org, from a statistical perspective, if there are 5.5 million car accidents each year, 770,000 are caused by uninsured drivers.
What Can You Do If You’re Involved in This Type of Accident in Rhode Island?
If you’re in an accident caused by an uninsured driver there are generally two options available. Drivers can bring a lawsuit against the uninsured motorists for damages or they can file a claim with their own insurance company for uninsured motorists benefits (if they have such coverage). It’s often recommended to hire a Rhode Island personal injury attorney who is also a RI uninsured motorist injury claim accident lawyer when an individual has been injured because of an uninsured driver. Because laws vary from state to state and insurance companies are not always cooperative, hiring an experienced RI car accident lawyer may be the best chance of receiving compensation.
Legal Notice per Rules of Professional Responsibility:
The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all lawyers and attorneys in the general practice of law, but does not license or certify any lawyer / attorney as an expert or specialist in any field of practice. While this firm maintains joint responsibility, most cases of this type are referred to other attorneys for principle responsibility.