I hope you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage with more than minimum limits. Most people don't check these limits and I would recommend at least $500,000. especially considering the increase in coverage is not that expensive. You can sue the other driver but the best route is to proceed against your insurance company under the uninsured motorist coverage. You should get a lawyer to represent you as these claims can be tricky to handle.
You have what is called an Uninsured Motorist (UM) claim against your own policy, so it is an insurance claim; not a lawsuit.
I handle tons of these. Very common. Get medical treatment, photograph the car, do NOT give any statements to anyone, and call a lawyer.
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You can sue but doing so probably would be unwise. An uninsureed motorist claim, assuming you have uninsured motorist coverage, is probably your best chance of being properly compensated for your damages. Assuming you have this type of coverage, you are at odds with your own insurance company. I would suggest having a free consultation with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Check your insurance policy to see if you have uninsured motorist coverage and call a lawyer. Most personal injury lawyers handle these claims. Do not speak with anyone else prior to contacting an attorney. Meanwhile, continue to get the medical care that you need.
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Unfortunately, your circumstances highlight how important it is to have your own insurance, and how much of an impact your failure to protect yourself adequately can have. Fortunately, if you do have good coverage yourselves, you should have little or no difficulty getting the compensation you're entitled to through your own insurance company. You should, however, talk with an experienced and competent plaintiffs' personal injury attorney. He/she can help you to the best course of action available to you. You may be able to pursue the negligent driver if you can find sufficient assets to recover, but nearly all of the time it's much more economic and expedient to go through your own insurance...even when you consider that your own rates might be affected.
"I was dead stopped for at least five minutes." If you were stopped at a stop light or sign, an insurance adjuster will raise an eyebrow for your timeline. In any event, turn it in to your UIM coverage, and if they refuse to provide you a reasonable settlement for your damages or injury, hire an attorney.
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No problem! As Mr. Hoffman told you, we handle these cases very often. You are making a claim against your own insurance company so you recovery is limited to your limits of insurance. If your attorney cannot agree on the proper settlement, the matter proceeds to arbitration. At the end of the day, your insurance company will seek a judgement against the at-fault driver and will notify the Secretary of State who will revoke their license unless the agree to and maintain a plan to repay your insurance.
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I agree with the other counsel that based on your description you have a valid Uninsured Motorist Claim (UIM). You should immediately contact an attorney who handles personal injury claims. The consultation will be free and ultimately if a fee is earned it will be based on a contingent fee contract, typically either 33% or 40% of the amount which may be recovered through settlement or arbitration hearing.
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You have a potential uninsured motorist claim against your own carrier.You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on Avvo.com dealing with many of the issues you are now facing. The Guides can be accessed through my profile page on Avvo.com.
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Legal Disclaimer: If this information has been helpful, please indicate below. Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.
As far as your personal injuries are concerned, you should make a claim for uninsured motorist's benefits under your own auto policy on the car you were driving. Regarding the loss of your car, hopefully you have collision coverage under your same auto policy, and if so again you will be making a claim under your own auto policy. In the meantime, I would submit all of your medical bills to your health insurance company.
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