No driver is supposed to be on the road unless they have car insurance that will cover their losses — and the losses of anyone they hit — in an accident. Unfortunately, Lousiana’s troubled car insurance system has uncompetitive rates that many residents simply can’t afford — so they go without and take their chances, hoping that they don’t need it.
So, what happens when you’re hit by one of these uninsured drivers? Unless you have declined such coverage in writing, you most likely have uninsured coverage that will take the place of the other party’s insurance when it comes to your bills, lost wages and other losses. (The same generally holds true if the other driver has insurance but the value is too low to meet your needs.)
If you’re in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, take the following steps:
- Call 911. Seek medical attention first, if necessary, and file a report with the police.
- Exchange information with the other driver, so that you can tell your insurance company who hit you.
- Do not agree to a cash settlement from the other driver to just walk away from the accident.
- Call your insurance company right away to report the accident and your known injuries. Make sure they understand that the other driver does not have insurance so that they won’t be waiting on another company to pay your medical bills.
Finally, it may be wise to talk to an attorney about your rights regarding compensation, especially if your injuries are serious. A misstep now could cost you dramatically.