Uninsured Motorist Accidents
Atlanta car accident attorney Stephen M. Ozcomert provides comprehensive representation in personal injury law. Over 20 years, he has successfully helped personal injury victims through every step of settlement negotiation and trial. Mr. Ozcomert is dedicated to fighting for the full compensation allowable by law for victims injured by negligent, uninsured motorists.Uninsured Motorist Accidents
Like other motorists, Georgia drivers have good reason to fear being hit by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. Although registered drivers are required to carry automobile insurance, states do not have an enforcement mechanism to check compliance. When an uninsured driver causes a serious accident involving extensive property damage, bodily injury, or death, the victims have little recourse to relief. At-fault parties are rarely capable of assuming personal liability for the significant financial consequences of their negligence. If uninsured drivers are indigent, insolvent or judgment-proof, victims can neither recover from insurers nor the careless driver. Atlanta uninsured motorist lawyer Stephen M. Ozcomert can help if you or someone you love has been in a car accident involving an uninsured or underinsured driver.
Georgia law only requires drivers to carry “liability” insurance, which covers at-fault drivers who cause an accident resulting in property damage or bodily harm to others. The minimum policy limit is $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. This only provides a thin cushion of protection, considering the significant limitations on innocent drivers in accidents involving:
- Catastrophic injury
- Follow-up treatment
- Full financial exposure
- Total permanent disability
- Temporary partial disability
- Future surgery, hospitalization
Innocent drivers have absolutely no way to recover compensation under their own policy when they are not at fault. They cannot obtain damages from the insurer or a judge if the uninsured driver is insolvent. Even in accidents caused by their own negligence, “liability” insurance still exposes the driver to legal liability for other parties’ damages exceeding the policy limit.Uninsured/Underinsured (UM/UIM) Coverage
Knowing that millions of motorists drive uninsured, Georgia drivers often choose to buy UM/UIM coverage. This provides a path to reimbursement for damages caused by uninsured motorists. UM benefits protect drivers where liable parties cause auto accidents involving:
- Property loss
- Vehicle damage
- Lost work, wages
- Bodily injury, death
- Hit-and-run accidents
- Medical or funeral costs
- Injured family or passengers
- Pain, suffering, mental anguish
When at-fault parties have no liability insurance or insufficient coverage, UM/UIM benefits can step in to cover losses caused by the fault of the other driver. Individuals are allowed to access the coverage of resident relatives. Most of the time, this coverage will stack on top of the liability coverage of the at fault driver and thus can provide more coverage to compensate you for your injuries.
Many worry that their premiums will rise if they make a claim on their UM/UIM coverage, but state law prohibits insurers from raising your rates or canceling your policy if the collision is not your fault.UM Coverage Requirements
Most drivers have almost no UM/UIM coverage or have reduced their coverage to save on premiums, which is a great shame. If there is insufficient liability coverage to compensate you for the loss suffered, then having UM/UIM coverage will be a great benefit to help get the compensation to which you are entitled. Especially after the first $25,000 in UM/UIM coverage, the coverage is very inexpensive and can make the difference between being fairly compensated and being grossly undercompensated.
There are a variety of special rules including contractual notice provisions that provide pitfalls for the unwary in this area. Sometimes, it is necessary to provide written notice very soon after a collision. Therefore, it is wise to seek advice with Atlanta uninsured motorist lawyer Stephen M. Ozcomert on these matters as soon as possible.Recovering UM Benefits
If an uninsured or underinsured driver caused an accident resulting in property damage or bodily injury, Atlanta personal injury lawyer Stephen M. Ozcomert can help. Legal representation can significantly increase your chances of recovering full compensation for your loss. Rather than haggling with insurance adjusters or worrying about the extent of your coverage, let Mr. Ozcomert fight for your rights. Whether you have the lowest cost policy or extensive UM/UIM coverage, he will seek to recover the award you are due and safeguard your family’s financial future. Call (404) 370-1000 for a free consultation or contact us online.