Your personal injury lawyer will tell you that the amount of coverage that the plaintiff has plays a crucial role in determining your final settlement amount in car accident cases. This article will explain this in more detail. Therefore, you should read further to learn more.
Main question: does the defendant have any coverage?
Your injury lawyer in Sudbury will tell you that your settlement will either be zero or pretty close to it if the defendant has little or no insurance coverage. It doesn’t matter how serious your injuries were or how much at fault he or she was. There are, of course, two exceptions:
• You carry underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage – you can still get a settlement from your insurance company under this rider even if the defendant is completely uninsured or is underinsured. You’ll receive a settlement that will completely cover your damages. The amount that you would have received from the defendant’s insurance company will be deducted from this. The only problem is that you’re out of luck if your damages are $1,000,000 and your underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage rider has a $500,000 limit.
• You can lay claim on the defendant’s personal assets – your personal injury lawyer will tell you that while this scenario is rare, it’s not unheard of. You can sue the defendant for his or her personal assets. In this sense, you can (indirectly) receive the settlement amount that will pay for your damages.
How does the amount of insurance affect your personal injury claim?
Your lawyer will tell you that the amount of insurance the defendant has will affect the settlement outcome of your personal injury claim. This is especially true if you are badly injured and it’s obvious that the other party was at fault. If, for example, your lawyer tells you that you’ll need a settlement of $1,000,000 to recover, you’ll receive your full settlement amount if the defendant’s insurance policy limit is at least one million dollars. Your case will proceed smoothly and go to trial and your lawyer will write the appropriate demand lawyer which will gladly be honored by the defense.
But, as your personal injury lawyer will tell you, the above scenario is so perfect and rare that it’s like a fairy tale scenario. The following scenario is much more likely. The defendant’s car insurance coverage has a policy limit of $200,000. In this case, the highest settlement amount you can get is $200,000. There is a way to recuperate the remaining $800,000 in damages. But it’s possible only if you carry at least that much in underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage.
Your lawyer will settle the claim for $200,000 with the defense and his/her insurance company and you will do the same with your own insurance company for the remaining $800,000. You are completely out of luck if your underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage policy limit is only $500,000. In this instance, you’re on the hook for $300,000 out of your personal assets. As you can see, and as your personal injury lawyer will tell you, the defendant’s car insurance coverage limits make all the difference.