You’re unlikely to have a case against the at-fault driver’s insurance company since they have no contract with you. However, you do have a contract with your insurer, so you can recover accident damages through them.
Provided you have collision coverage, you can file a claim with your vehicle insurance policy to cover the cost of repairs. Your insurance company should pay for all repairs, minus your deductible. Similarly, if you have collision injuries, your uninsured motorist coverage can pay your medical bills.
Your insurance company will likely seek reimbursement from the at-fault driver’s insurer for all of these expenses through a process known as subrogation.
During subrogation, your insurance company contacts the at-fault driver’s insurer and requests reimbursement for the value of your claim. Once the other driver’s insurance company confirms that he was at fault for the collision, it will pay your insurer, up to the limits of his policy.
Subrogation offers a few important benefits:
- You may feel more comfortable dealing with your insurance company rather than having to go through the other driver’s insurer.
- If your policy provides reimbursement for a rental car while your wrecked vehicle is being repaired, you’ll be able to start driving the rental right away.
- The claims process will be much faster since your insurance company doesn’t need to conduct an investigation in order to determine fault prior to paying your claim.
- If your insurance company recovers its expenditures through subrogation, it's required to recover your deductible as part of that process. Your insurer isn't permitted to keep the deductible, so it will be refunded to you.
You Need an Attorney
Dealing with insurance companies is never an easy or pleasant experience, but guidance from an experienced personal injury attorney can greatly simplify the process. To learn more, contact the law offices of the Scott Ray Law Firm by using the form on this page.