Orlando, FL asked in Car Accidents and Personal Injury for Florida

Q: I was hit by an uninsured driver. My car is to totalled and I only have liability coverage from my insurance. What other

Options do I have concerning compensation for my vehicle and a personal injury claim. I must add that the vehicle and car insurance was in my husband's name only.

3 Lawyer Answers

David Hughes Harris

Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Venice, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: If I understand the question, uninsured driver strikes your vehicle and you are injured; however, you also don't have uninsured motorist (UM) coverage.

These circumstances do present a real challenge to compensation.

If the vehicle was owned by someone else, then you can pursue the owner and his/her for damages. You can still file a lawsuit against the driver and owner and pursue him/her/them personally. You be able to obtain a judgment against him/her/them and then execute on the judgment, garnish wages, etc.

There may be other options available, but the only way to know would be a review of the specific facts here. So, try to consult a lawyer and provide all the insurance info and traffic crash report, etc. for a fact-specific evaluation. Best wishes to you.

Charles M. Baron agrees with this answer

Charles M. Baron

Answered
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Hollywood, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: First, your husband's PIP coverage will pay for your medical bills to a certain extent, assuming your first treatment is within 14 days of the accident. You would simply contact his insurance and say you wish to set up a PIP claim. Secondly, you would look to uninsured motorist ("UM") coverage for liability of the uninsured driver, but it sounds like your husband didn't have it.

So for going after the at-fault uninsured motorist for your pain/suffering, any medical bills not paid by PIP, and auto damage, you (through an attorney or on your own) would make a written demand to that person (and, if he/she was not the owner, then also to the owner) demanding $X in compensation, and determine if the matter can be settled.

Of course, that person may not have that kind of money or have any money at all. In that case, to try to squeeze that person for something, you can file a lawsuit, and if you get a judgment in your favor (which you would get quickly and easily if that person doesn't contest it), you'd be able to get the State Bureau of Motorist Compliance to suspend that person's driver's license for a period of time (3 to 20 years, depending on the circumstances) until such time as that person makes good on the judgment. If the person then has some way of taking care of it (like borrowing $), maybe something would happen.

Jonathan A. Klurfeld

Answered
  • Boca Raton, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: You could try to sue the other driver personally, but if they have no money or assets to take, you are likely out of luck. You cannot get blood from a stone. That is why carrying UM coverage and adequate coverage is so important. The other problem is you were technically driving uninsured unless his coverage covered also named household family members driving the car and covered. If not elected in his policy, then his insurance may also deny paying out for your accident for the car or injuries now.

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