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Las Vegas Uninsured Motorist Accident Lawyer

Suffering injuries in a motor vehicle accident is stressful enough. If the driver that hit you did not have liability insurance, stress caused by the financial burdens from your wreck weigh even more heavily on your shoulders. Worrying about how you’re going to pay for your medical bills, get your vehicle repaired, and replace the income you’ve lost interferes with your peace of mind and your ability to heal from your accident. You shouldn’t have to face these challenges alone. 

If an uninsured motorist caused you to suffer injuries in a car accident in Las Vegas, don’t wait to contact an attorney. Although filing a personal injury claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company is not an option, there may be other sources of recovery available to you. Uninsured motorist accident lawyer Christopher Burk has nearly 20 years of experience protecting the rights of the little guy. Our law firm will evaluate your case, review your insurance coverages and the circumstances of your case, and help you recover maximum compensation for your losses. 

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Understanding Uninsured Motorist Accidents in Las Vegas

As the victim of an uninsured motorist accident in Nevada, you’ll face a variety of challenges that other car accident victims probably won’t face. Instead of filing a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance policy, for example, you will need to explore alternative routes to recover compensation. While getting a fair settlement or jury award to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering is going to be difficult, it’s not impossible. Understanding these types of accident and hiring an uninsured motorist accident lawyer to help you navigate the claims process, however, are vital to your financial recovery. 

What Is an Uninsured Motorist Accident?

An uninsured motorist accident occurs when the at-fault party involved in a motor vehicle accident does not have liability insurance coverage to cover the costs of damages and injuries to other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. 

In Nevada, it is a legal requirement for drivers to carry liability auto insurance. Despite this obligation, roughly 10% of Nevada drivers fail to carry insurance that meets state requirements. Making the irresponsible decision to drive without insurance can cause crippling financial hardship for others if these people cause injury or fatality accidents.

What Are Common Causes of Uninsured Motorist Accidents?

Negligent driving behaviors, such as speeding, reckless driving, distracted driving, aggressive driving, or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, are the top causes of uninsured motorist accidents in Las Vegas. 

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Why Do People Drive Without Liability Insurance?

There are various reasons why some drivers choose to be uninsured, including:

  • Financial constraints: Some individuals may struggle to afford insurance premiums due to financial difficulties.
  • Negligence: Some drivers fail to purchase insurance due to personal negligence or a lack of awareness of the legal requirements.
  • Suspended or revoked licenses: A driver may have had their license suspended or revoked due to previous convictions or traffic violations. In such cases, insurance providers may refuse to issue a policy.
A man is looking sad after two cars crashing on the road.

How Does Uninsured Motorist Insurance Work After an Accident?

Uninsured motorist insurance (UM) is a type of auto insurance coverage that can be crucial if you’re involved in an accident with a driver who doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your damages. Here’s how uninsured motorist insurance works after an accident in Las Vegas:

  1. Coverage Types: Uninsured motorist coverage typically comes in two forms: uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI) and uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD). UMBI covers your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering if you’re injured by an uninsured or underinsured driver. UMPD covers the damage to your vehicle or other property when the at-fault driver lacks insurance.
  2. Filing a Claim: After an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you would need to file a claim with your own insurance company if you have uninsured motorist coverage. You’ll need to provide details of the accident, including the other driver’s information and any available evidence such as police reports or witness statements.
  3. Coverage Limits: Like other insurance types, uninsured motorist coverage has limits. You can choose the coverage limits when you purchase your policy. It’s essential to select limits that adequately protect you in case of an accident, considering potential medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage costs.
  4. Hit-and-Run Accidents: Uninsured motorist coverage can also apply in hit-and-run accidents where the at-fault driver flees the scene and cannot be identified.
  5. Legal Process: Your insurance company will investigate your claim and assess the damages. If you and your insurer cannot agree on a settlement amount, you may need to go through arbitration or, in some cases, file a lawsuit against your own insurer.
  6. No-Fault States: In no-fault states like Nevada, you may first seek compensation from your own personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, but if your injuries exceed the PIP limits or meet certain criteria, you can then turn to your uninsured motorist coverage.
  7. Cost: Adding uninsured motorist coverage to your auto insurance policy typically increases your premiums. However, the added protection can be invaluable if you’re in an accident with an uninsured driver.
  8. Legal Assistance: If you encounter difficulties with your insurance company when filing an uninsured motorist claim or believe your claim is unfairly denied, you may want to consult with an uninsured motorist accident attorney to protect your rights.

How Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Apply to Hit-and-Run Accidents?

In hit-and-run accidents where the responsible driver cannot be identified or lacks insurance, uninsured motorist coverage can provide essential financial protection. It ensures that you have a source of compensation for injuries and property damage, allowing you to recover from the impact of the accident even when the at-fault driver flees the scene.

If you’re the victim of a hit-and-run accident, your uninsured motorist coverage can come into play in two ways:

UMBI: If you’re injured in a hit-and-run accident, and the at-fault driver cannot be identified or does not have insurance, your UMBI coverage should apply. Your own insurance company will compensate you for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering up to the limits of your policy.

UMPD: If your vehicle is damaged in a hit-and-run accident, and the responsible driver cannot be identified or lacks insurance, your UMPD coverage should cover the property damage. This typically includes repairs or replacement of your vehicle, up to the policy limits.

To file a successful uninsured motorist claim in a hit-and-run case, you’ll usually need to have reported the accident to the police and obtained a copy of the police report. Additionally, any evidence you can provide, such as witness statements, photographs, or video footage, can be helpful in supporting your claim.

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How to Protect Your Rights as an Accident Victim

If you have been involved in a Las Vegas car accident with an uninsured motorist, hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer is crucial to protect your rights. By understanding more about uninsured motorist accidents, taking necessary steps after the accident, and relying on the knowledge and skill of an experienced attorney, you can increase your chances of a successful outcome. 

Reporting the Accident to Law Enforcement

Following an accident with an uninsured driver, it is essential to report the incident to the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles or local law enforcement authorities within 10 days, as required by state law. This step creates an official record of the accident, which is vital when seeking compensation.

Gathering Evidence and Documenting the Accident

To build a strong case, it is essential to gather evidence at the accident scene. This can include taking photographs, collecting witness statements, and obtaining the contact information of involved parties.

Seeking Prompt Medical Attention

Even if you believe your injuries are minor, it is crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible following the accident. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, and delaying medical treatment can harm both your health and your claim.

The Importance of Hiring a Las Vegas Uninsured Motorist Accident Lawyer

A skilled Las Vegas uninsured motorist accident lawyer will guide you through the complicated legal process, ensuring you meet all necessary deadlines, file the appropriate paperwork, and present a strong case to maximize your chances of recovering fair compensation.

An experienced attorney will evaluate your losses, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any potential future expenses or disabilities resulting from the accident. Your lawyer will ensure you receive fair compensation to cover these losses.

Insurance companies often try to settle uninsured motorist accident claims for the lowest possible amount. Your lawyer will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, ensuring you are not taken advantage of and that your rights are protected.

If a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiation, your lawyer will prepare your case for trial and represent you in court.