What to Do If You’re Hit by an Uninsured Driver in Indiana

June 9, 2024 / Car Accidents

Under any circumstances, a car accident is stressful at best, and at its worst it could be utterly devastating. When the other party involved has no auto insurance, the stress and devastation mount. Victims need compensation for their losses and parties at fault must be held accountable for paying that compensation; they usually do so through their insurance policies.

If you or someone you love is hurt or experiences property damage in a car accident with an uninsured driver, all hope for compensation is not lost. An Indiana car accident lawyer from Stephenson Rife PLLC will review your case for free and present you with options for securing the compensation you justly deserve.

Indiana Auto Insurance by the Numbers

Indiana requires all drivers to carry minimum insurance for the vehicles they operate. This minimum follows a 25/50/25 formula, which means all operators must have coverage of at least:

  • 25,000 for bodily injury to or death of one individual
  • $50,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more individuals in any single accident
  • $35,000 for property damage per single accident.

According to the Indiana Department of Insurance (IDOI), all new insurance policies must include minimum coverage for damage or injury by an uninsured or underinsured motorist unless the person seeking insurance rejects that coverage in writing. Coverage includes the same 25/50 breakdown for uninsured motorist bodily injury, $25,000 for property damage, and $50,000 for underinsured motorist bodily injury.

When Indiana motorists are involved in an accident, they must report the accident to their insurance company. That company must then file a certificate of compliance with the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV).

Uninsured Motorist Statistics

The Insurance Information Institute (III) reports that for the most recent year of data collected, 14%, or about one in every seven drivers, operated their vehicles without required insurance. On its list ranking states from highest to lowest rates of uninsured motorists, Indiana ranked at number 21, showing a rate of 13.9%. For Indiana drivers, this means that for every seven cars they share the roads with, one is likely uninsured.

Steps to Take After the Accident

After any motor vehicle accident, steps must be taken to ensure your safety and protect your potential personal injury claim. Stop, check for injuries, and provide help when possible. Typically, this means calling for emergency care. Then, call the police to the scene.

Uninsured motorists may try to convince you not to call authorities – they do not want to face consequences for driving without insurance. However, calling authorities is especially important when the other driver is uninsured, as doing so forces the driver to provide honest contact information.

Snapping a photo of the other car and license plate is an important precaution. You have no way of knowing whether a driver has insurance until you ask, and they may try to speed away to avoid a conversation and accountability. If you have a photo of the license plate, you at least have some way of tracking down the offender.

Gather other evidence. Take pictures of the vehicles, your injuries, and the environment overall. Look for security or traffic cameras and take pictures of their locations. Your attorney can request that footage, potentially using the content to support your claim. Take down contact information from any witnesses.

Report the accident to your insurance company. Some policies have reporting time limits. However, keep your initial conversation brief and factual, telling the representative when and where the accident occurred and providing, if available, the other driver’s contact information. Do not minimize your injuries or say anything that could be taken as an admission of fault. After that, secure representation from Stephenson Rife LLC and direct all additional communication to your experienced Indiana car accident lawyer.

See A Doctor

You may feel fortunate to walk away from your accident with no apparent significant injuries. But assuming you are injury free or just a little sore can be dangerous. See a doctor after your accident. Some injuries take time to fully manifest. Others become worse without treatment, and, even more frightening, some are deadly if not diagnosed and treated right away. Brain injuries can be deceptive: you might not notice symptoms until it is too late to prevent permanent damage or death.

Your prompt care also avoids potential insurance arguments. If you tell your representative you feel fine, then later say you sustained injuries, you leave them the opportunity to dispute that claim. The same goes for the at-fault driver, if you choose to sue them personally.

How an Indiana Car Accident Attorney Can Help

If you have an uninsured motorist insurance (UIM) policy, your first option is to seek coverage from your insurance company. While we may think our insurer is on “our” side, companies are on their own side. They want to pay out as little as possible. Have a skilled car accident attorney in Indiana review your claim, including the fine print, and handle all communication with your insurance representative. This way, you can be sure the company fully honors your claim.

If you do not have UIM, or the damages you sustain are more extensive than your policy covers, your attorney can advise you of other options. You may file a third-party suit against the driver personally, or your lawyer may discover additional parties who contributed to your accident and file against them.

No matter how you seek compensation, your attorney can fight to protect you from false blame. Under Indiana’s comparative fault laws, victims assigned a percentage of fault for the accident have their compensation reduced by that percentage. It is in your insurance company’s and any third party’s best interest to apportion you as much blame as possible. Stephenson Rife PLLC will fight against any unfair accusations.

Let Us Help You Win Your Fight

Drivers who operate without insurance show no concern for Indiana law or those sharing the roads with them. And when those drivers hurt you, they put the onus on you to secure coverage through your own insurance policy – or figure out some other plan. Stephenson Rife LLC takes that unfair burden off of you. A seasoned Indiana car accident attorney from our firm will deal with your insurance company if that option applies and explore other ways of delivering much-needed compensation. Schedule a free consultation, and let us fight for you.

Attorney Mike Stephenson

Attorney Mike StephensonMike Stephenson has 40 years of experience and is a trusted advisor to many individuals and companies. His current practice is dominated by civil litigation in state and federal courts. He focuses much of his time on handling catastrophic injuries caused by all types of accidents, including motor vehicle, trucking, workplace injuries, product liability, and fire, just to name a few. He also works extensively in construction accidents. [ Attorney Bio ]

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