Most drivers feel secure about acquiring compensation after a vehicle crash because having auto insurance is mandatory in the U.S. Unfortunately, not all motorists comply with the law, meaning that they may be underinsured or may not have insurance coverage at all.
As of 2019, New York ranked 49th in the nation for its rate of uninsured motorists. What this figure means is that just over 4% of state residents have no vehicle insurance. Although this is a positive statistic as it indicates most New Yorkers have adequate insurance, you still risk your compensation if an uninsured motorist hits your car.
What options do you have after an uninsured accident?
In New York, drivers must carry uninsured and underinsured coverage. Your first step is filing an uninsured motorist claim with your own insurance company. However, if your policy contains only the minimum amount of this mandatory coverage, you may not receive enough compensation to meet your medical expenses.
Your next option is to file a civil injury lawsuit against the uninsured driver for his or her negligence. Sometimes, these claims help accident victims meet their financial compensation needs. Other times, the uninsured driver may not have the funds to pay even if you win your lawsuit.
To get the answers you need, consider taking your story and your vehicle insurance policy documents to an injury lawyer for a thorough review. In many cases, a legal perspective can help improve your ability to access the part of your auto policy that covers uninsured motorists.
Your lawyer can also investigate the full details of your crash to determine if an auto part manufacturer contributed to your accident. For example, if a defective auto part played a role in the accident, you may be able to file a product liability claim. In turn, the successful resolution of the claim can provide you with additional compensation options.