Visitor Question

Question about Uninsured Underinsured Motorist Coverage…

Submitted By: Anonymous (USA)

My step-son was involved in an auto accident where the other driver was cited and also left the scene of the accident. My step-son was driving my car. He was injured and is in the process of filing a lawsuit against the other driver’s insurance.

It has been mentioned to me that if the other driver’s insurance does not have medical liability that my insurance company then can be sued for his injuries. Is this correct?

Also, if he would win a settlement for $100,000 and I only have coverage for $50,000, would I be responsible for the other $50,000? Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

It is important to make clear in automobile collisions that injured people do not actually sue the insurance companies. If suit is filed it is filed against the driver and not their insurance company. The insurance company will then hire its own attorneys to defend their insured.

In your step-son’s case if the at-fault driver did not have liability (medical) insurance your step son can sue the driver personally. (Most of the time when people can’t afford to pay their own insurance premiums they are really not financially worth suing, as they probably do not have much, if any of their own money.)

In the alternative, your step-son has a choice. He can communicate to you he wants your insurance company to pay for his injuries. When he does that you will then have to notify your insurance company and tell them you have been told by your step-son he intends to pursue his claim for damages against you.

If your insurance company refuses to pay him, or attempts to settle the case for less than your step-son requires, then your step-son can file a lawsuit against you personally. At that time you will be served with the lawsuit by either a local constable, sheriff’s deputy, or private process server. Once served with the law suit you will have to turn it over to your insurance company so they can begin to defend you.

If your step-son does decide to sue you and he wins a judgment in excess of your coverage you will be responsible personally to pay the difference.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: May 16, 2011

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