You are in an accident and quickly learn the other driver was intoxicated and lacked insurance. What do you do? In this situation, your first step is to call the police, report the crime, and then get medical care even if you feel okay.
Taking those steps makes sense, and it is likely that you already have done them. The question many of our clients have is what to do after a drunk driver hits them, and they need help covering their losses. Who is going to pay for your medical bills and lost time at work?
At Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer, we know how challenging this can be. In many of our client’s cases, they come to us with real concern about how they will recoup their losses and get back to their lives. Our team can answer your questions.
Call our car accident attorney in Atlanta for immediate guidance and help. We provide a free consultation – you pay us nothing, but we provide you with the information you need.
What to Do When a Drunk Driver with No Insurance Hits You
After an accident occurs, the likely first step is to file a claim with the insurance company of the responsible driver. Yet, when that driver does not have insurance, you may be unsure of what legal rights you have. There are several things that can happen in this situation.
File a Claim with Your Insurance
Your first option is to file a claim with your personal car insurance provider. If you have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage – which is required for all drivers to carry under Georgia law – you gain the financial protection you need from your policy. This type of insurance policy will cover your likely losses up to the maximum listed on your policy.
However, this is like any other insurance claim. The insurance company will pay you the bare minimum they can get away with, and that often exposes you to risk. Even if you have a robust car insurance policy, you may still need to have help from our car accident attorney to help you navigate your options in pursuing maximum compensation.
File a Claim Against the Drunk Driver
Even without car insurance, the drunk driver is responsible for the losses they have caused to you. You can file a lawsuit for anything over and above what your insurance policy pays you. This could mean requiring the drunk driver to pay out-of-pocket for your losses.
They may have to liquidate assets to do so. Filing a claim and lawsuit for your losses may seem like a challenge, but it is one of the best routes to take when you are suffering financially due to their negligence.
Keep in mind that any civil actions you take like these are not in relation to the criminal actions that the court may take against that driver.
Determine What All of Your Losses Are
To know what your options are in pursuing financial compensation, start with understanding what all of your losses are. Chances are good there are many more than you realize. Take a look at some of the most common losses our clients claim after a car accident with a drunk driver in Georgia.
- Emergency medical care
- Medical expenses for hospital stays, surgical procedures, and care
- Long-term medical needs, such as in rehabilitation centers
- Pain and suffering claims
- Mental anguish
- Property damage to your vehicle or other assets
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capability
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
If your loved one lost their life as a result of an uninsured drunk driver hitting them, wrongful death claims are possible. We encourage you to seek out help from our car accident attorneys to get the legal guidance you need for these losses.
Punitive Damages May Apply
Under state laws, the court can impose punitive damages on top of the economic and non-economic damages you may pursue after such a case. This is an important part of the process. Punitive damages are often assigned to cases where there is substantial reckless behavior. Drunk driving is one of those examples.
Punitive damages are over and above the losses paid otherwise, and that is one of the reasons why you may need to seek a lawsuit against the responsible party and not just settle for what your insurance company pays to you. Punitive damages can be significant, and they can make a big difference in helping you reconstruct your life after such an accident.
Why You Need an Attorney in an Uninsured Drunk Driver Accident
It is a misconception to believe that because you are filing a claim for your losses through your own insurance company, you can handle the process on your own. Doing so still exposes you to risk. That is because the insurance company is likely to do all that it can to reduce the compensation owed to you.
Let our experience guide you. We stand out from insurance companies who are trying to reduce what you are paid. We go after those who are responsible for victim losses. No matter how severe your losses are, you have rights in a case like this. Let our attorneys help you to get the help you need. We will help you with:
- Determining who is to blame
- Seeking compensation from your own insurance company
- Pursuing a lawsuit to seek compensation from the defendant’s assets
- Determine all of your losses now and later
- Fight for your rights – we do not downplay the severity of this accident on your life
Start with a Free Consultation with Our Attorneys
At Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer, we know what you are facing and the worry that comes with it. Let us alleviate many of those concerns when you seek out a consultation with our car accident attorneys. If you were hit by a drunk driver with no insurance, let us help you know what to do next.
Set up a free consultation with our car accident attorney now. There is no cost to you. If we do not help you win your case, you owe us nothing.