Strom Law Firm Columbia SC

What Happens When a Car Accident Claim Exceeds Insurance Limits?

If a car accident claim goes beyond the insurance limits, the insurance company will cover up to its policy cap and not a penny more. This means the person who got hurt might still have bills left unpaid. To bridge this gap, they can either go after the driver responsible for the crash, consider suing, or lean on their own insurance if they have underinsured motorist coverage.

In South Carolina, every driver needs to have at least:

  • $25,000 coverage for injuries per person
  • $50,000 coverage for total injuries in an accident
  • $25,000 for property damage in an accident

While these are the basics, many people choose to get more coverage, and some policies even reach into the millions. If you get hurt in a car crash and the costs are more than the other driver’s insurance limit, it’s a good idea to talk to a reputable South Carolina car accident lawyer. They can help figure out the best way to get the money you need and ensure that your rights are fully protected throughout the process.

How To Get the Compensation You Deserve

In car accidents, determining who is ‘at fault’ is crucial for insurance claims and potential lawsuits. The at-fault driver is the one deemed responsible for causing the accident. This can arise from various behaviors, such as reckless driving, speeding, not obeying traffic signs, or driving under the influence, among others.

Liability or fault in car accidents is central because it determines who is financially responsible for the damages incurred. In many jurisdictions, the insurance of the at-fault driver covers the expenses related to the accident, like vehicle repairs and medical bills for the injured. 

It’s also worth noting that more than one driver can share fault in an accident. In these situations, a percentage of blame may be assigned to each involved driver, which can influence the compensation each party receives.

When you’re in a car accident and the damage exceeds the insurance coverage of the at-fault driver, it can feel overwhelming. Luckily, there are multiple avenues that you can pursue to potentially get paid.

Consider Legal Action

If you have significant injuries from an accident, especially if the claim exceeds the at-fault driver’s insurance limits, consult a legal expert. They’re skilled in negotiating with insurance companies and can ensure you get the rightful compensation. 

Working with a personal injury attorney can streamline the process. When choosing one, consider their experience, client reviews, and fee structure–many work on contingency, meaning they’re paid only if you win.

Act quickly, as laws have deadlines for filing personal injury claims. Always document all accident-related details, including photos and bills. Can you claim a car accident without a police report? Yes, you can–but having one often strengthens your claim. An attorney can best advise you on how to win your case.

Your Insurance Might Help

If the other driver’s insurance doesn’t cover all the costs, look at your own policies. Your health insurance might cover medical expenses, and if you’ve invested in collision or underinsured motorist coverage, it could also assist in covering car repair costs. 

Always remember, though, that these policies might come with deductibles and could affect future premiums. After using your insurance, there might be a temporary spike in your premiums. However, shopping around or negotiating with your provider at renewal time can help mitigate this increase. 

Find Out the Other Driver’s Limit

It’s important to know the extent of the at-fault driver’s insurance. You can find this out in a few ways: reach out to the driver directly, liaise with your insurance provider if you have an open claim, or write a formal demand letter to the opposing party’s insurer. 

You need this information to know how much of a gap you’ll need to cover. Don’t wait for the other driver or their insurance company to volunteer this information; however, insurers might sometimes be reluctant to disclose policy limits without a formal claim or legal action. 

Check Other Responsible Parties

In some accidents, more than one party could be at fault. Identifying all negligent parties can broaden the potential sources of compensation. Investigate the accident’s circumstances thoroughly. 

For instance, if a faulty car part contributed to the crash, the manufacturer might be held accountable. The principle of shared fault or contributory negligence can influence the compensation you can claim, depending on your state’s laws.

Regardless of the complexity of your situation, Strom Law has the depth of expertise required to represent your interests. Whether you’re seeking clarity on what self-defense is in criminal law or you’re navigating other complex legal matters, our seasoned professionals are here to guide you and champion your case. Schedule a free consultation today!

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