Despite Idaho setting minimum auto insurance requirements, many drivers in the state are still uninsured. This can be a significant issue if they cause a collision with another motorist.
If this happens, you may have the option of filing an uninsured motorist claim. There are also options available if the other motorist is insured but their coverage is limited and does not cover the full extent of your losses. Work with our team of talented attorneys experienced in handling uninsured/underinsured car accidents in Coeur d’Alene.
State laws require that every driver carry the following minimum amount of coverage.
Since car wrecks can result in catastrophic injuries, the minimum required coverage frequently is not enough to cover the extent of a person’s harm and losses. If you were involved in a collision with a Coeur d’Alene driver who did not have insurance or carried only the state minimum, you should speak with our attorneys about what to do.
If the at-fault driver in a vehicle collision does not have insurance coverage or has inadequate insurance that will not cover your damages, you may file an uninsured motorist claim. Importantly, you will file this claim under your own insurance policy. The law requires insurance companies to offer uninsured motorist coverage with each policy they sell to motorists. Therefore, unless you declined the uninsured motorist coverage when purchasing the policy, you will likely have it within your insurance agreement.
In Idaho, an insurance company owes a duty of good faith and fair dealing when handling first party claims. It is important to file a proof of loss to trigger the duty of good faith and fair dealing. If your insurance company does not pay the claim promptly, then you may have to file a lawsuit, in which case you may also be entitled to recover attorney’s fees. To protect your rights, including being awarded attorney’s fees, it is important to retain a Coeur d’Alene attorney to handle the uninsured/underinsured claims process.
In Idaho, each driver is responsible for paying the portion of damages for which they were at fault. Fault is a person’s legal responsibility after a vehicle collision. Under Idaho Code § 6-801, as long as the plaintiff is not more than 49 percent responsible for the crash, they can collect compensation for damages.
When the claimant does share a portion of liability, the court will subtract that amount from the total award for compensation. For example, if the total award amount is $200,000, and the jury determines that the injured party was ten percent at fault, they could only collect $180,000. If, however, the percentage of fault attributed to the injured party is more than 49 percent, then they will not be eligible to collect compensation for damages.
If you were in an accident with a negligent driver who does not carry enough insurance coverage, you still have options to collect compensation for your losses. Our skilled team could help review your insurance policy and file the appropriate claim. In our experience, insurance companies often do not treat their insureds fairly and retaining an experienced attorney early will likely help maximize the damages that can be recovered.
Schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about uninsured/underinsured car accidents in Coeur d’Alene.
Owens, McCrea & Linscott, PLLC