What can I do if the other driver didn’t have any insurance coverage?
If the other driver lacks insurance coverage – unfortunately, that is all too common on North Carolina roads – your uninsured motorist (UM) coverage should cover your losses up to the policy’s limits. Even though it’s your own insurer, these cases can be complicated.
Under state law, you are required to have certain minimum amounts of liability insurance coverage – or coverage that pays for the property damage or bodily injury damage you cause. The current bodily injury minimum amounts are $30,000 per person or $60,000 per accident. The property damage minimum amounts are set at $25,000. This is sometimes referred to as 30/60/25. So, in a perfect world, the driver who caused your crash would have this insurance.
But that’s not always the case. If the driver has no insurance, you can turn to your UM coverage. This pays for both property and bodily injury damage when the other driver is uninsured. Your insurer must provide this coverage in the same minimum amounts as your liability insurance. So, if you have 30/60/25 liability coverage, you should have the same in UM coverage. Unfortunately, an insurer may delay or deny paying your claim. An attorney should be consulted to deal with the insurance company on your behalf.
A related issue arises when the other driver’s insurance fails to cover the full extent of your losses. If this occurs, you may have underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage available. If you carry liability insurance above the 30/60/25 minimum amounts, you should have this coverage. It will pay up to the difference between the other driver’s liability insurance and your UIM limits.
Any settlement of a car accident claim must take all insurance policies into account. See our page on Settling Your Car Accident Claim to learn more.