Does the driver that caused a car accident and was at fault have to pay for my damages in injuries even though I am not insured

Asked almost 6 years ago - Portsmouth, OH

i was involved in an auto accident the other driver was at fault and was cited for it but i was uninsured and she had insurance does her insurance still have to pay for damages and injuries?

Additional information

The insurance company was closed earlier than I had anticipated. I couldn't reinstate insurance, (uninsured for 11 days) and while driving home ... was hit pretty hard. My questions are:

I am in INDIANA, this gentleman rear ended me, while I was waiting for a traffic light to change from red to green. I have no insurance, is he at fault?

He told me he has full coverage insurance, Can he sue me for his damages, even though his truck hit my car?

What is the time limit on seeing a doctor? How long do I have to file against his insurance?
Will I be suspended for not having insurance?
I am reinstating today, my insurance company allows up to 30 days to reinstate, can they reject me now, since the accident? Or keep me as a client at high risk rates, even though the accident wasn't my fault.

Should I have called or should he have called his insurance company at the time of the accident?

Attorney answers (12)

  1. Mark Roland Baran

    Contributor Level 10

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    Lawyer agrees

    5

    Answered . It depends (probably the most common thing people hate to hear from a lawyer). Most commonly, in a straight forward auto accident, there should be insurance coverage available. However, there are exceptions which may exclude insurance coverage depending on the specific facts of your auto accident. Also, you will still have the burden of proving whatever injuries and damages incurred are related to the other driver's alleged misconduct (As a common example, preexisting injuries can complicate the issues invovled and need to be discussed with a lawyer).

    Additionally, you should definitely speak with a lawyer as their are other questions that need to be discussed such as the specific circumstances and facts involved. For example, in some circumstances automobile insurance coverage can be excluded under certain circumstances which are very fact specific to your accident. One example may include if the car was taken without the permission of the owner. Another example may include if the driver had a siezure or other medical condition causing the accident. However, the specific facts of your case must be fully discussed with a injury lawyer and you should ask the lawyer you hire to get a copy of the insurance policy of the other driver. Most injury lawyers will take the time to speak with you about this during an initial consulation at no cost to you. Generally, after that, work performed is on a contingency fee basis which means the lawyer advances case expenses and recovers a percentage of the settlement and case expenses (or verdict if it goes to trial) once the case is concluded.

    Finally, the use of your word "at fault" needs to be discussed with a lawyer. In Ohio, a person can be cited in an accident but then go to court and plead "no contest" to the citation. In such a cirucumstance, some of the findings of the officer, or the determination of fault by the officer, can be excluded at trial as hearsay (since the officer did not witness the auto accident first-hand). Fault, in Ohio, is determined by a jury (or Judge if a jury is not requested) unless the party admits fault. Ohio is a modified comparative 51% fault state which means that your burden of proof is that the person you allege casued you harm was 50% or more at fault to recover.

    As a final thought, I see that it appears you live in Portsmouth, Ohio and I'm assuming that the auto accident occurred in Ohio. However, if it occured in Kentucky or another state, this raises a whole set of other questions and isssues that need to be discussed, most importantly the law that applies.

    It is important that you discuss ALL facts and circumstances of your case with the lawyer you speak with and, if you have a police report, have it available during the discussion. Ask lots of questions and be selective.

  2. Daniel Arthur Romaine

    Pro

    Contributor Level 5

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    Lawyer agrees

    4

    Answered . Your status - insured or not insured - does not affect your right to recover from the at fault driver nor the at fault driver's obligation to pay for damages proximately caused by his/her negligence.

  3. Eugene Ray Critchett

    Contributor Level 11

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    Lawyer agrees

    1

    Answered . Answer to initial question, yes. If you are involved in a collision in Ohio with another Ohio driver the at fault driver is responsbile for any damages they cause regardless if the innocent party has insurance coverage. However, this answer may change if you are involved in a collision in a "no fault" state. You must also remember that you have the burden of proving what damages were caused in the collision. This is where most of the disputes arise with the liability insurance carriers.

    There is no "time limit" to see a doctor. Common sense dictates that if you are injured, go see your family physician and follow his or her advice. If you try to "tough it out" and you eventually need medical treatment, the insurance company will certainly argue that you were not hurt and/or that something else other than the collision caused your injuries.

    The remaining facts of your case would require additional investigation to determine an absolute answer for your particular case. Good luck.

  4. Matthew Douglas Powell

    Contributor Level 8

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    Lawyer agrees

    5

    Answered . The answer to your question is yes. Despite not having your own insurance, the bad driver, and her insurance company are still liable to compensate you for your losses.

    Make sure you get to a doctor, and contact a good personal injury lawyer in your area for help.

  5. Jeremy Michael Burnside

    Contributor Level 8

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I noticed this post is about 12 months old and is from my local area. I wanted to make sure your rights have been protected thus far. Some of your questions raised some red flags in my mind about what should have happened one year post-collision.

    If you were rearended and the at-fault party had insurance, you should have already received your property damage settlement. If you are still being treated for your injuries as a result of the accident, I hope you have a lawyer because you are going to need one.

    Usually, if I have a client who has been treating for over a year, I prefer to have a test such as an MRI to show that a permanent injury has taken place (such as a disc herniation) to justify the ongoing treatment in preparation of a potential jury trial. If no such opinion as to permanency exists, I advise the client to hold on for a probable bumpy road. Ohio juries do not favor accident victims - - especially in Southern Ohio where juries are reminded of participants of county fair demolition derbies who walk out of their multiple bad accidents fine.

    For your sake, I hope that this matter is now long behind you.

  6. Jeremy Michael Burnside

    Contributor Level 8

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I noticed this post is about 12 months old and is from my local area. I wanted to make sure your rights have been protected thus far. Some of your questions raised some red flags in my mind about what should have happened one year post-collision.

    If you were rearended and the at-fault party had insurance, you should have already received your property damage settlement. If you are still being treated for your injuries as a result of the accident, I hope you have a lawyer because you are going to need one.

    Usually, if I have a client who has been treating for over a year, I prefer to have a test such as an MRI to show that a permanent injury has taken place (such as a disc herniation) to justify the ongoing treatment in preparation of a potential jury trial. If no such opinion as to permanency exists, I advise the client to hold on for a probable bumpy road. Ohio juries do not favor accident victims - - especially in Southern Ohio where juries are reminded of participants of county fair demolition derbies who walk out of their multiple bad accidents fine.

    For your sake, I hope that this matter is now long behind you.

  7. Jason M. Melton

    Pro

    Contributor Level 13

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    5

    Answered . YES YES YES

    At least in florida there is nor provision in the law that allows people to negligently crash into other people, cause injury and then get to say "well it's too bad you didnt have insurance"

    You are just as entitled to be compensated as if the President of All State Insurance was hit.

    The only difference is the compensation may be different due to the amount of applicable insurance policies. I hope for your sake 1) you were not badly hurt 2) the other driver had insurance 3) you use this accident as a lesson to go and purchase Under or Uninsured Motorist Coverage

    Good Luck!

  8. Robert Sauers

    Contributor Level 10

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    Lawyer agrees

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    Answered . Yes and no. The other driver is responsible but will do nothing unless you file a claim. You should immediately see an attorney that handles plaintiff's personal injury. Dealing with the insurance company by yourself is in most cases unfair to you. They are not your friend and will not just write you a check because it is the right thing to do. They will try to get you to accept the lowest amount possible. Your primary concern at this point should be to obtain any necessary medical treatment so that you can get well and let an attorney deal with the insurance company.

  9. Todd Samuel Richardson

    Contributor Level 6

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    Lawyer agrees

    4

    Answered . Your insurance (or lack there of) has no bearing on your ability to recover from someone who injured you. You will rely on the wrong-doer's insurance and (to the extent his insurance is insufficient and the wrong-doer has the ability to pay) the wrong-doer for payment of your injuries.

    One note of warning: do NOT rely on the fact that the other driver was cited as proof they were "at fault." That MAY be the case, but if they were cited for something unrelated to the cause of the crash/injury, then it will be of little to no help; also the resolution of the ticket may be important ... the fact that someone was cited does not mean they admit the violation.

    You will want the assistance of a good personal injury attorney to help you be able to recover for your injuries.

    Good Luck.

  10. Donald Solomon Nathan

    Contributor Level 12

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    7

    Answered . You have a bunch of questions in all likelihood, but I am going to confine my answer to the one posed above until you come into my office for a full consultation.

    The fact that you were uninsured at the time of the crash does not make the other driver any less at fault for your injuries or your damages. He has to pay for them. If he has insurance to cover for those damages, that insurance company is going to have to pay what he is obliged to pay.

    The fact that the other driver was cited only goes to show that the police officer who came to the scene and conducted an investigation thought the other driver was at fault. Likely he was.

    I need to interview with you to fill in a lot of blanks and for you to ask other questions I am sure you have. Call me for an appointment if you want to pursue the matter. You have only two years within which to bring an action for injuries, five years for property damage. I have not been retained to pursue any remedies for you as of yet and assume no professional responsibility for your situation until you do.

  11. Robert S. Windholz

    Contributor Level 8

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    Lawyer agrees

    2

    Answered . I know of no reason why you can't assert a claim for damage. Contact the other insurance company and nicely demand that they cover your damage. They will let you know quickly if there is any reason why you can't bring a claim.

  12. Donald Solomon Nathan

    Contributor Level 12

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    5

    Answered . You have a bunch of questions in all likelihood, but I am going to confine my answer to the one posed above until you come into my office for a full consultation.

    The fact that you were uninsured at the time of the crash does not make the other driver any less at fault for your injuries or your damages. He has to pay for them. If he has insurance to cover for those damages, that insurance company is going to have to pay what he is obliged to pay.

    The fact that the other driver was cited only goes to show that the police officer who came to the scene and conducted an investigation thought the other driver was at fault. Likely he was.

    I need to interview with you to fill in a lot of blanks and for you to ask other questions I am sure you have. Call me for an appointment if you want to pursue the matter. You have only two years within which to bring an action for injuries, five years for property damage. I have not been retained to pursue any remedies for you as of yet and assume no professional responsibility for your situation until you do.

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