In Alabama, the law requires that vehicle owners maintain a certain amount of liability car insurance in case they cause an accident. Despite this, a significant number of drivers do not have car insurance, and this can lead to difficulties if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured driver who is at fault. There are a few things worth considering, including legal representation and the type of insurance you have prior to an accident.
Typically, with car accidents the injured party is eligible for compensation that accounts for your medical bills, time off of work, property damage, and other losses. If you have uninsured motorist coverage on your insurance policy your work will be much easier. Considering the fact that 1 in 8 drivers nationwide, and 19% in Alabama, do not carry the mandatory amount of insurance, it would be wise to add uninsured motorist coverage to your policy. In the event that you do not have UM coverage on your policy things become more complex, and it will be important to consult an attorney who specializes in car and trucking accidents.
In lawsuits with uninsured drivers, there are a few things to bear in mind. First, according to Alabama code Section 6-2-38, you have two years to bring charges and recover damages from the other driver. If you do not file within a reasonable time your suit can be dismissed due to the Statute of Limitations.
Second, many drivers who go without insurance do so because they can’t afford it. This can affect the results of your lawsuit. Chances are, if they can’t afford insurance, they can’t afford to pay out any reward you are given by the court. Any payment you are likely to receive will come in installments as opposed to a lump sum pay out. This can be an inconvenience if your medical costs or other damages are too great, but a series of payments is better than nothing.
In other situations, drivers may claim that they do not have the assets to pay you for your damages, when in fact they do. This is when it is important to have a car attorney in Birmingham or wherever you live who can run an asset search on the uninsured driver. An asset search will turn up any property, business investments, or other assets that they may own. If this is the case, then your attorney can assist you in having the driver’s assets frozen through a lien, or a claim against assets that are used as collateral when satisfying a debt. If your lawsuit is successful, then your payments will come from the sale of those assets.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, and real estate closings on this website. He is always available in any of the firm’s offices or by phone anytime for a consultation. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply any feedback. We appreciate our readers and love to hear from you!