Like in most states, Indiana requires drivers to carry car insurance. The minimum liability car insurance requirements are $25,000 for bodily injury per person per accident, $50,000 for bodily injury for all people per accident, and $25,000 for property damage per accident.
It is illegal to drive without car insurance, and driving without it will result in costly fines, driver’s license suspension, and a repeat offender may even have their car’s registration suspended.
Most drivers are aware of these requirements and penalties, yet many Indiana drivers operate their vehicles without insurance. According to the Insurance Research Council, almost 16% of Indiana drivers didn’t have car insurance in 2019, slightly above the national average of 12.6%.
Fortunately, if you’re involved in a car accident in Indiana with an uninsured driver, you can still recover compensation through Indiana uninsured motorist coverage.
Am I Obligated to Obtain Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
Every new car insurance policy comes with uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. The difference between the two types of coverage is that underinsured protects you in the event that the other driver has insurance, but their policy doesn’t cover all of your damages.
You are not legally required to carry uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. To opt out, you’ll need to fill out a written statement saying that you were offered the coverage but that you’ve decided to reject it.
Although not legally required, obtaining uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is critically important if you suffer from an accident caused by a driver lacking insurance or sufficient insurance.
What If I Don’t Have Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
If you reject uninsured motorist coverage, you’ll likely have a difficult time recovering compensation for damages if an uninsured driver is liable for your accident. You have the option to sue the at-fault party for vehicle damages and personal injuries, but if the driver doesn’t have insurance, they likely don’t have the economic means to cover your expenses. You’re far more likely to recover compensation through your uninsured motorist policy.
What Compensation Will I Receive with Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
Your uninsured motorist coverage will protect you in the event that an uninsured driver causes your wreck or if you’re the victim of a hit-and-run accident.
The minimum amount of coverage you can expect with your Indiana car insurance policy includes:
- $25,000 covering bodily injury per person
- $50,000 covering bodily injury for everyone involved in the accident
- $25,000 for property damage
You will not be able to receive more compensation than what your policy covers, so you may want to consider investing in more coverage than the state’s minimum.
In addition to covering vehicle damages and medical bills, your policy can cover lost wages — meaning the money you lost because your injuries prohibit you from working — and pain and suffering. Depending on the amount of your coverage, you may also be able to recover compensation for future medical bills associated with your injuries.
What Compensation Will I Receive with Underinsured Motorist Coverage?
Like with uninsured motorist coverage, your underinsured motorist coverage can cover different types of damages, including property damage, medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The difference is that the at-fault driver’s insurance company will be responsible for a portion of your damages. The liable driver’s insurance should cover your expenses up until your damages reach the policy’s maximum amount. For example, if the driver has $25,000 in liability insurance for bodily injury and your medical expenses are $75,000, their insurance will compensate you for $25,000, and your underinsured motorist coverage will cover the remaining $50,000.
The minimum amount of underinsured motorist coverage you can expect from a new Indiana auto insurance policy is $50,000 in bodily injury per person per accident.
Will My Uninsured Motorist Coverage Protect Me If I’m a Passenger?
In addition to protecting you from uninsured drivers when you’re behind the wheel of your own vehicle, most uninsured motorist policies will also apply if you’re injured by an uninsured driver while you’re traveling in another vehicle. This applies if you’re a passenger in another car or if you’re driving a vehicle that is not your own.
For example, if you’re riding as a passenger in a friend’s car and an uninsured motorist runs a red light and strikes your vehicle, your uninsured motorist policy will cover your medical expenses.
This is also the case with underinsured motorist coverage, so if the at-fault driver’s insurance policy won’t cover all of your medical expenses, your underinsured motorist policy will cover your expenses up to your individual policy’s monetary ceiling.
Obtaining Compensation From Your Insurance Company
If you’re involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, you’ll need to file an uninsured motorist claim with your insurance company. Like with filing a liability claim, you’ll need to be able to provide evidence to receive compensation. You’ll need to prove that the other driver caused the wreck, that they don’t have car insurance, and that you suffered damages as a direct result, such as property damage and medical bills.
Unfortunately, your insurance company may attempt to undervalue your claim in order to save money. Insurance companies are private organizations that aim to maximize profits, and they’ll handle your claim similarly to a non-client filing a claim. They’ll work to reduce the amount you can recover in damages, and they may even attempt to deny your claim entirely.
For that reason, it’s important to enlist the services of an experienced Indiana car accident attorney who can represent you and hold your insurance company accountable for what they owe you.
Contact an Aggressive Car Accident Attorney Today
If you’re struggling to recover the money you deserve from an at-fault driver, their insurance company, or your own insurance company, you need top-notch legal support to assist with your case.
For experienced car accident attorneys in Indianapolis, contact Crossen Law Firm. We’ll represent you so that you can recover the maximum compensation possible for property damage, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Call us today at 317-401-8626, or you can contact us online here.