An Uninsured Driver who was driving under the influence hit my car

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An Uninsured Driver who was driving under the influence hit my car

I got involved into an accident last month. A lady who was under the influence hit and totaled my car. To make things worse, this lady does not have auto insurance. Now my car is totaled and I did not get anything to fix my car or to have money to go to the doctor to get checked. I only had liability insurance and am wondering if I can sue my own insurance for this accident?

Asked on July 25, 2017 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The only way to get money from a driver who was at fault in hitting your car (and who does not have insurance which may honor your claim) is to sue her: you file a lawsuit against the driver, and if you can prove in court that she was at fault (which should be relatively straightforward if she was under the influence; you can potentially use the results of the State of FL case, if she is found or pleads guilty, to help prove this), you can get a court judgment (basically a court order) requiring her to pay.
The problem is likely to be less whether you can win the case as whether you can collect: if she did not have insurance, that may be because she could not afford insurance, or it may be because she does not have enough (e.g. enough income, property, or other assets) as to make it worthwhile to buy insurance (i.e. she could be "judgment proof" if she has so little money that no one can collect from her). If she is impoverished or insolvent, then even if you win the lawsuit, you may not be able to collect: a court judgment in your favor does not make money appear where there is none.


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