What If the Driver Who Injured Me Didn’t Have Insurance?
Drivers in Ohio are required to carry mandatory minimum amounts of auto insurance coverage. They must show proof of insurance at traffic stops, accident scenes, and vehicle inspections. Nevertheless, some motorists drive with no car insurance. An estimated 13% of drivers in Ohio are uninsured, as stated in a news release by the Insurance Research Council. If you have been injured by an uninsured driver, you may be wondering how to recover compensation for your losses.
What Are the Legal Requirements for Auto Insurance in Ohio?
Under Ohio law, you must have insurance to drive any motor vehicle. The owner of a vehicle may not allow anyone else to drive it without insurance, according to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). The minimum amounts of auto insurance coverage required are:
- $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person
- $50,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more people
- $25,000 for property damage per accident
Uninsured drivers can face criminal penalties. A first offense can carry a fine of up to $500 and a driver’s license suspension for up to 90 days. Offenders may also be required to obtain SR-22 insurance, a more costly type of insurance designed for high-risk drivers. For a second offense, penalties are even more severe. Despite the consequences, uninsured drivers are still on the road. Cuyahoga is the county with the second-highest number of uninsured drivers in the state – 6,615 – as reported on NBC 4.
How Do You Deal with an Uninsured Motorist Accident?
If you have been hit by a driver who is uninsured, your priority is to seek emergency medical attention if needed and report the accident to law enforcement. All drivers are required under the Ohio Revised Code at Section 4549.021 to stop at the scene of the accident and, upon request, provide the names and addresses of the driver and owner of the vehicle, the registered number of the vehicle, and a driver’s license. If you are able, gather evidence at the scene, including pictures of the vehicles and any visible injuries you sustained, contact information for eyewitnesses, and any camera footage available. See a doctor as soon as possible after the accident.
If the driver who caused the crash is uninsured, you have the option to seek compensation through your own uninsured motorist coverage. This insurance is designed to cover your medical bills, lost earnings, and other losses caused by an uninsured driver. Although you may be entitled to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, most uninsured drivers lack the financial capability to cover the damages. Uninsured motorist coverage is intended to come into play in such situations.
Do You Need an Attorney for a Cleveland Uninsured Motorist Claim?
After a crash caused by an uninsured driver, if you have uninsured motorist coverage, you may file a compensation claim against your insurer up to the policy limits. Insurance companies are in business for profit. Even your carrier may be motivated to minimize the amount it pays for your claim. That’s why you need an experienced attorney on your side.
Our skilled Cleveland car accident lawyers are assertive and can effectively negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf. We can help you get the full compensation you deserve after a serious auto accident.
We’re Here to Protect Your Rights After an Auto Accident
George Mineff, Jr., Attorney at Law has proudly been in practice since 1984. We have an established track record of achieving successful results for our clients.
Our seasoned personal injury attorneys have 50 years of combined experience representing Cleveland and Northern Ohio residents in personal injury cases.
If you have been injured by an uninsured motorist, contact us at (216) 621-3930 to find out how we can help.