Who Pays for a Car Accident in California?

Car insurance companies for at-fault drivers usually pay for property damage and medical bills after an accident. When an uninsured driver is involved, victims may seek help from their own insurance providers.

Protecting Yourself After a Fullerton Car Accident

After a Fullerton traffic accident, it’s not uncommon for victims to sit for a moment to process what happened, and then wonder who will be held financially responsible.

At-fault drivers are usually identified, and their auto insurers are called upon to provide support to injured victims. But what if an insurance company attempts to blame an innocent party for the crash? What happens if a hit-and-run driver leaves the scene and is never identified?

A Fullerton Car Accident Lawyer is your defense against this kind of unfair treatment that may come from another driver’s insurer or your own insurance company. You may not need an attorney after a minor accident, but in certain situations, you can be robbed of valuable compensation without strong legal representation. Contact GK Legal for a free, no-obligation case evaluation to find out if you need a lawyer.

Filing an Insurance Claim After a Car Accident

California is an at-fault state, meaning that the driver who is responsible for an accident can be sued for the cost of injury care and property damage. But car accident cases usually don’t make it to court. They are usually settled between victims and car insurance providers.

A Fullerton police collision report or one submitted by the California Highway Patrol will usually point to the driver who made a careless or reckless move that caused an impact. You would file a claim against the guilty driver’s car insurance and include a list of all the bills and other hardships you’ve endured.

The insurance company would hopefully offer you a settlement that you could either accept or reject. If you rejected the claim, you would turn around and demand more. This negotiation process is often more successful with an experienced Fullerton car accident lawyer representing you. A skilled attorney with GK Legal has the negotiating skills to force an insurance company to provide the most support available.

Insurance Tactics After a California Car Accident

But be aware, insurance adjusters don’t always abide by the findings on a police collision report. An insurance company can dispute whether its policyholder was to blame. They often do this to try to limit the money they’ll have to pay to you. It’s an unfair tactic that can point the finger at innocent drivers.

In fact, insurance adjusters often try many tactics to try to avoid paying for your hospital bills and replacing your lost income while you miss work. These are just a few of the common strategies:

  • Shifting blame away from the guilty driver.
  • Downplaying how serious your injuries are.
  • Not alerting you to every benefit you are eligible to receive.
  • Making you wait as your bills grow until you are desperate enough to accept a “lowball offer.”

Your Fullerton car accident lawyer will be fully investigating your accident and collecting evidence so that an insurance company can’t wiggle out of taking responsibility.

Your lawyer would also be examining every car accident settlement offer to make sure it’s enough to cover every damage you’ve suffered. If not, a skilled Fullerton Car Accident Attorney will help you reject the offer and fight for more. If an insurer is unwilling to provide what’s fair, your lawyer will be ready to file a lawsuit and take the insurance company to court.

Who Pays for an Accident When an Uninsured Driver Is Involved?

Uninsured drivers are a big problem in Fullerton and across California. It’s illegal to operate a vehicle without car insurance, and yet thousands of people are on local roads without coverage.

Fortunately, victims hurt in car accidents caused by uninsured drivers can still seek support for their car repairs and their doctor bills.

If you were hit and the driver had no insurance, you would file a claim with your own car insurance provider. This claim would draw from your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Your insurer would provide financial support to help you recover and support your family while you were out of work.

It’s also possible to file a lawsuit against someone who causes a car accident while uninsured, but the judgment earned is rarely worth the trouble. Someone without car insurance likely doesn’t have a lot of assets and savings. An uninsured driver probably won’t be able to pay you whatever you are awarded by a judge.

Underinsured coverage can also help you when an at-fault driver has insurance but has the bare minimum in coverage. The driver’s policy may hit a coverage limit and leave you to pay half or more of your medical expenses. Your underinsured motorist protection would offer you more support to cover the remaining bills.

Who Pays for an Accident When a Hit-And-Run Driver Is Involved?

When a driver strikes you and then makes the heartless decision to flee the scene, it can leave victims stuck with medical bills and car replacement costs.

In the best-case scenario, investigators are able to track down the suspect. You would then be able to file a claim against the suspect’s car insurance company, even as the person faced criminal charges.

Unfortunately, many hit-and-run drivers escape identification. If a suspect is never found, victims would again have to file a claim with their own car insurance company under the uninsured motorist policy.

It’s still a situation where a skilled local car accident attorney can make sure you get the maximum available for your insurance claim. Your own insurance representative may still try to limit the support you receive. It’s up to an attorney to make sure you have everything you need.

Other Ways to Pay for Damages After a California Car Accident

There are two other insurance options you can sign up for that will protect you after an accident. Med-Pay is an optional coverage that helps cover your hospital bills, no matter who is found at fault. Med-Pay can also help pay for burial costs in the event a crash turns fatal for you or a family member.

Collision insurance is another add-on for California car insurance customers. This coverage pays for your car repairs regardless of who was responsible for the crash. Both extras safeguard you and your family from underinsured motorists, uninsured motorists, and hit-and-run motorists.

Contact a Fullerton Car Accident Lawyer Today

Unfortunately, innocent victims of car accidents are sometimes convinced to pay their own damages or to pay for someone else’s damages. They are cheated out of the compensation they need to rebuild their lives. Don’t let this happen to you.

If you live in or around Fullerton, and you were injured in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, contact us for a free consultation and case evaluation.

Don’t sit around wondering who should pay after an accident. Get a definite answer from a real Fullerton Car Accident Lawyer in a no-obligation answer session. If you decide we can help you earn the most possible for your injury claim, you won’t need to have any money on hand. We don’t accept payment unless we win your case for you. Then our fee comes out of the settlement money you are awarded.