Car Accident: Uninsured Motorist And Unknown Driver Coverage
My wife was driving her new Ford on Wilson Boulevard in Arlington, Virginia. She was on her way to Safeway. She was rear-ended by a driver going 50 m.p.h., who was charged by the Arlington County Police with reckless driving. She fractured her right arm in two places. She had surgery the next day to put the bones together. My wife still cannot use her rifght hand as a result of this Arlington, Virginia auto accident. We learned that the other driver did not have any auto insurance. Mr. Schwartz, what can we do?
ANSWER: Virginia law protects you against negligent drivers that do not have auto insurance. Your Progressive auto insurance policy must provide insurance that protects you against an uninsured motorist. This insurance is called, “Uninsured Motorist Coverage,” abbreviated “UM.”
In your wife’s Arlington, Virginia car accident, the other driver had no insurance. Your insurance company “steps into the shoes” of the reckless uninsured driver and pays your wife’s personal injury claim. Your insurance company, Progressive, then goes after the reckless uninsured driver in an attempt to get its money back from her. Your rates do not go up because the uninsured driver was the one at fault, causing your wife’s car crash. Uninsured motorist coverage protects you and your family members injured by an uninsured motorist.
Uninsured motorist coverage is very similar to underinsured motorist coverage. The difference between the two is that with underinsured motorist coverage the negligent defendant has insurance but not enough. With uninsured motorist coverage the defendant has no insurance. To learn more about uninsured motorist coverage, please consult Gerald Schwartz’s reference book for lawyers “Auto Insurance: How to Get All the Coverage and Beat the Defenses”.
Many times a person suffers serious personal injury from a car crash caused by a careless driver who flees the scene of the car accident. Unfortunately, his identity is unknown.
Before the passage of uninsured motorist laws, a person injured in an auto accident was left without a remedy. The law did not allow him to sue an unknown driver. Fortunately, over 60 years ago, uninsured motorist laws were passed in every state in the country. They protect people injured by motorists who have no insurance and by unknown motorists who flee the scene.
As an example, assume you are involved in a Loudoun, Virginia auto accident on I-66, caused by a negligent, hit and run driver.
When a negligent driver flees the scene of an automobile accident and is unknown, Virginia auto accident law allows the injured person to bring a “John Doe” personal injury claim under his own uninsured motorist coverage with his own insurance company. There is no requirement that the injured person use diligence to find out his identity. As a result, you are entitled to bring a “John Doe” claim to compensate you for your Loudoun, Virginia car accident injury. To learn more about “John Doe” claims, click here.
Virginia car accident lawyer Gerald Schwartz has a reputation as an expert on uninsured motorist and unknown motorist insurance coverage which helps to compensate people injured by drivers who have no insurance. Schwartz has 30 years experience representing people injured in Loudoun and Arlington, Virginia auto accidents. Schwartz is one of “The Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Virginia.” For a free consultation with Gerald Schwartz call 1.800.423.0055.