Can You Sue a Drunk Driver With No Insurance?
After suffering serious injuries from a car accident caused by an uninsured drunk driver, victims face many uncertainties. What are their rights? What happens next? Can they sue the drunk driver to cover their damages, even if the driver has no insurance?
The answer largely depends on your own insurance policy and the specific details of the crash. The Montgomery injury attorneys at Stokes Stemle, LLC, are dedicated to helping victims of drunk driving accidents recover from their injuries and losses. We can answer your questions about what to do if you’ve been hit by an uninsured drunk driver.
Understanding the Problem: Drunk Driving without Insurance
If a drunk driving car accident recently impacted your life, you are not alone. Drunk driving statistics from Drive Safe Alabama show that in a recent year, 5,106 crashes occurred where drug or alcohol impairment was suspected.
While Alabama law requires all vehicles registered in Alabama to be covered by liability insurance policies, not all drivers carry the required insurance. For this reason, insurance companies offer uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage on auto insurance policies. If you purchase UM/UIM coverage, your policy will provide the financial assistance you need, up to your policy limits, in the event of an uninsured drunk driving accident.
Your Rights After an Accident with an Uninsured Drunk Driver
According to the Insurance Information Institute, uninsured driving statistics from a recent year show that Alabama has the seventh-highest percentage of uninsured drivers in the nation. After an uninsured drunk driver has injured you, you have options for financial recovery. You can sue the drunk driver or maybe even the bar that overserved them. You can also file a claim under your UM policy.
Be sure to report the accident to your insurance company immediately and advise them that the other driver does not have insurance. Your insurance company will likely initiate the claims process and investigate the accident, including seeking confirmation that the at-fault driver is uninsured, before making a coverage determination under your policy. Our attorneys can help with this process. Although you are dealing with “your” insurer in a UM claim, the insurance company’s goal is still to pay out as little as possible. Our lawyers are ready to demand the full compensation you deserve.
If you don’t have UM/UIM coverage, your healthcare insurance could pay your medical bills.
Legal Options: Suing the Uninsured Drunk Driver
If the drunk driver who caused the accident is uninsured, you can sue the driver directly to pay for your losses related to the accident. However, most motorists who don’t have insurance also lack the resources to pay a judgment.
Our personal injury attorneys can help you determine your best option for recovery. More than likely, filing a claim with your insurance company can provide the financial support you need in the aftermath of an accident with an uninsured driver. Whether pursuing the other driver directly is a viable option depends on whether any judgment the court awards will be collectible. If the driver does not have assets available to pay a potential judgment, it is likely not worth suing them.
However, our lawyers can investigate all possible avenues for compensation, including suing the establishment that overserved the drunk driver.
How Stokes Stemle, LLC, Can Support You
With our personal injury lawyers, you can be confident you have an advocate with the knowledge and experience to handle your case. We will explore all available avenues for total compensation for your losses. We are committed to helping people injured by negligent drunk drivers seek the justice they deserve.
If you were injured in an accident caused by an uninsured drunk driver, contact our car accident attorneys as soon as possible to schedule a free consultation.