What can I do if I was recently in an accident with an uninsured motorist?

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What can I do if I was recently in an accident with an uninsured motorist?

How do I get him to pay for the damages to my car and the fees I have acquired because of the accident (medical,and other transportation to and from work, as well as missed days from work)? Do I need a lawyer and, if so, who? I filed with my insurance company and started the repair process to my car.

Asked on January 14, 2014 under Personal Injury, Texas

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Since your property damage claim was filed with your insurance carrier, you have uninsured motorist coverage.  You can also file a personal injury claim through your insurance carrier as an uninsured motorist claim.

When you complete your medical treatment and are released by the doctor or are declared by the doctor to be permanent and stationary which means having reached a point in your medical treatment where no further improvement is anticipated, obtain your medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss.  Your personal injury claim filed with your insurance carrier as an uninsured motorist claim should include those items (medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss).

Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  If the case is settled with your insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed by you.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from your insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the uninsured motorist who was at fault in the accident.  When you get a judgment against the uninsured motorist, enforce the judgment with a wage garnishment.

If your case is NOT settled with your insurance company, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party (uninsured motorist and registered owner of that vehicle if the registered owner is someone other than the uninsured motorist) prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter. 

As for an attorney to represent you, it would be advisable to contact a personal injury attorney.  Your County Bar Association may have a lawyer referral service which can refer you to a personal injury attorney.


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