According to a 2015 survey, approximately 13 percent of all U.S. drivers are uninsured. In Illinois, that percentage is only slightly higher, at 13.7. Illinois has the 18th highest number of uninsured motorists in the nation. If you’ve been hit by an uninsured driver in a car accident, it’s important to know what to do. At Dwyer & Coogan, P.C., our Chicago car accident attorneys strive to help victims involved in uninsured motorist collisions to recover compensation for their injuries. Learn more below, and contact us for a free initial consultation today.
Illinois Insurance Requirements
Illinois insurance requirements are some of the strictest in the nation. In addition to having to meet specific coverage requirements, the state’s Mandatory Insurance Law (625 ILCS 5/7-601) requires the Office of the Secretary of State to select license plate registrations at random and run a verification process. The state recognizes this as the most effective way to identify uninsured vehicles. Vehicle owners have the right to run a verification process of their own to ensure that they are in compliance of the law. One is in compliance with the law if one has the following coverage:
- $25,000 coverage for the injury or death of one person in an accident
- $50,000 coverage for the injury or death of more than one person in an accident
- $20,000 coverage for the damage of another’s property
Drivers are required to carry their insurance cards in their vehicles at all times and to show it to officers upon request. Unfortunately, despite strict requirements, some drivers continue to drive around uninsured and to put others at risk. It is important that you know your options for when you are involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist.
Carry Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Per Illinois law, insurers are required to provide insured individuals with uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. Underinsured motorist coverage applies when a person has an insufficient amount of coverage to cover the cost of damages he or she caused in an accident. To be compensated for damages in an uninsured or underinsured car crash, you must submit an uninsured motorist claim to your insurance carrier.
Because you are essentially suing your own insurance company when you file an uninsured motorist claim, the process is completely different than filing a typical car insurance claim. The procedures are different, and the rules are different.
Although the company is your own provider, and though you pay it to protect your financial interests, they will not simply pay you what you believe your claim is worth. An experienced uninsured car accident lawyer can help you through the claims process, negotiate with the insurer, and help ensure that you walk away with the compensation you need and deserve.
Contact A Chicago Car Accident Lawyer Today
If you were hit by an uninsured driver in a car accident, you may feel helpless and out of options. Know that you are not. Our experienced attorneys at Dwyer & Coogan, P.C. are prepared to help you file and follow through with your claim. We can help you maneuver through the insurance company’s red tape and negotiate for the damages you need to recover in comfort. Contact us today to learn more.