Car accidents happen more often than you might expect in Texas.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there were more than 14,000 serious injury collisions in the states in 2017, and more than 17,500 people sustained a serious or life-threatening injury. Indeed, there is at least one fatal collision every day on Texas roads.
As in other states, Texas requires anyone who drives to have valid automobile insurance. However, just because automobile insurance is required does not mean that everyone has it. To be sure, uninsured drivers are routinely involved in serious motor vehicle crashes, making it difficult for injury victims to obtain compensation.
If you were hit by an uninsured motorist Texas, you are likely wondering what your next steps should be.
Our experienced car accident lawyers want to provide you with more information about accidents involving uninsured and underinsured drivers in Texas, as well as options for suing an uninsured motorist.
Learning More About Uninsured and Underinsured Automobile Insurance Coverage
Texas law requires drivers in the state to have a minimum amount of liability insurance.
As the Texas Department of Insurance explains, liability insurance is designed so that drivers who cause accidents and injuries will be able to fairly compensate anyone who was injured in the crash.
Texas requires drivers to have the following minimum amounts of liability insurance:
- $30,000 per person for bodily injury liability;
- $60,000 per accident for bodily injury liability; and
- $25,000 for property damage liability.
You may be wondering: Do I need uninsured motorist coverage in Texas?
While Texas law does not require drivers to have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, your insurance company is required to make it available to you along with personal injury protection (PIP) coverage.
Even though Texas requires the liability coverage listed above, simply requiring insurance does not guarantee that every driver will obtain the correct amount of liability insurance.
When an accident happens which involves an uninsured or underinsured motorist, uninsured or underinsured coverage can become extremely important.
Seeking Compensation When You Have Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If you were hit by an uninsured driver, you may be able to obtain compensation from your own insurance company if you have uninsured motorist coverage.
We’ll explain the difference between uninsured and underinsured coverage.
Uninsured versus underinsured motorist coverage will cover you if you are injured in a crash caused by someone without insurance.
On the other hand, underinsured motorist coverage can cover you if you are injured in a crash caused by someone with the appropriate minimum insurance coverage when that person’s liability coverage is not sufficient to compensate you for your losses.
For example, if you are involved in a crash with an individual maintaining$30,000 minimum insurance liability limits and sustain injuries that ultimately entitle you to a recovery in excess of that amount, then you may make a claim for underinsured motorist coverage to further compensate you for your claim.
Making a Claim When the At-Fault Driver is an Underinsured Motorist
When a motorist is uninsured, but you have uninsured motorist coverage, you will likely begin the compensation process by filing a first-party insurance claim through your own insurer. You may seek to recover uninsured compensation from your own insurance company as a claim and, if the claim is not fairly handled, you may file suit directly against your insurance carrier.
There are a number of complicated notice issues, the statute of limitations issues, credit issues, and other prerequisites to filing uninsured and underinsured motorist claims. An experienced car accident attorney can discuss and explain your options with you.
Contact a Skilled Texas Car Accident Attorney
Were you injured in a collision caused by an uninsured driver? A Texas car accident attorney can help.
Contact our firm today to schedule a free case consultation.