If the other driver is at fault for the accident, you can still file a claim with their insurance company, but you won’t get compensation for your pain and suffering or emotional distress.
Auto insurance is mandatory for any driver in Missouri, but sometimes we find ourselves in unfortunate situations. Statistics show that 14% of drivers in Missouri are uninsured. Some because they can’t afford insurance and have to use their cars for important trips. Others simply forget to renew their policy or to pay their insurance bills.
Regardless of the reason why you were uninsured at the time of your car accident, you are surely wondering what your options are now. A car accident can leave you with piling medical bills, property damage, the impossibility of using your car or driving where you need to be, inability to work or secure an income, and so on. When you are uninsured, these problems hang like dark clouds over your life, since there is no insurance plan to cover your expenses.
What Happens When You Are Uninsured in an At-Fault State?
If you were in a no-fault state, like Florida or Kansas, the other driver involved in the accident will file a claim towards their own insurance company for compensation. Then you would have other options besides insurance to cover your own damage.
The situation becomes more difficult in at-fault states like Missouri. If you are found liable for the accident, the other driver can file a lawsuit against you and claim compensation that you will pay from your own pocket. Moreover, you could also be facing penalties for driving while uninsured. A car accident can be very costly for you if you were uninsured at the time.
What Can You Do in This Situation?
Unfortunately, there is a rule of law in several states, including Missouri, that’s called “No Pay, No Play”. This limits the compensation a driver would receive if they are in a car accident while being uninsured by the minimum auto insurance required by law. If the other driver is at fault for the accident, you can still file a claim with their insurance company, but you won’t get compensation for your pain and suffering or emotional distress.
If you were at fault for the accident, the other driver can sue you for compensation, and you will have to pay everything out of your own pocket. Your only chance is to fight as much as you can to prove that liability is shared, or that you were not at fault for the accident. In some cases, like when the other driver is intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, exceptions can be made for the “No Pay, No Play” rule.
Get in Touch with a Car Accident Lawyer
No matter what your situation is, you must reach out to an experienced St. Louis car accident lawyer to evaluate your case and determine if there is any chance of getting compensation even if you are uninsured.