Insurance is a requirement for all Massachusetts drivers. Of course, just because auto insurance is mandatory does not mean that every driver buys it. If you get into an accident caused by a driver who is uninsured, partner with a Massachusetts car accident lawyer to explore your legal options.
DiBella Law Offices, P.C. is a trusted advocate for personal injury claims in the Bay State. Our Massachusetts car accident attorney will help you get compensation from an at-fault motorist, regardless of whether this driver has insurance. Contact us to learn more.
How Auto Insurance Works in Massachusetts
Massachusetts is considered a compulsory insurance state, which means every driver must have certain coverages. There are four insurance coverages that are classified as compulsory in the Commonwealth. These are:
1. Bodily Injury to Others
This protects a motorist if they accidentally injure or kill someone. The coverage applies only if a crash happened in Massachusetts. Per state law, a driver must purchase at least $20,000 per person and $40,000 if more than one individual gets hurt.
2. Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
PIP covers medical expenses, up to 75% of your lost wages, and any replacement services to a maximum of $8,000. Massachusetts is a no-fault insurance state. As such, PIP covers these losses no matter who is responsible for an auto accident.
3. Bodily Injury Caused by Uninsured Auto
This coverage protects you, anyone whom you allow to drive your car, and any household members and passengers who are uncovered under a similar Massachusetts policy for losses caused by an uninsured or unidentified driver. For example, if you are injured in a hit-and-run accident and cannot identify the at-fault driver, you are covered. Like bodily injury to others coverage, you must buy a minimum of $20,000 per person and $40,000 total for all people injured by an uninsured driver.
4. Damage to Someone Else’s Property
Commonly referred to as “property damage” coverage, this accounts for damage that a driver causes to someone else’s property during a crash. The coverage applies to you and any members of your household who you allow to drive your car. You are required to buy this coverage with a minimum limit of $5,000.
Driving without auto insurance in Massachusetts is illegal, and there are penalties for those who violate this requirement. For a first-time offender, they may be required to pay a $500 fine or a year’s worth of compulsory insurance. If someone violates this requirement more than once, they can be fined up to $5,000, lose their license, and be put in jail.
What You Need to Know About Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage in Massachusetts
UM coverage is not mandatory in every state, but it is required for those who drive a car in Massachusetts. Keep in mind that mandatory uninsured motorist coverage in Massachusetts relates only to incidents if an unknown, hit-and-run driver causes an accident. It does not necessarily apply if you know who caused your crash and this individual does not have coverage.
You have the option to purchase additional UM coverage and supplement your insurance policy to maximize your protection. Even if you have uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance company is likely to do whatever it can to avoid paying the full amount of your claim. This is due to the fact that most insurance providers are focused on their bottom line above all else.
When in doubt about what to do following your auto accident with an uninsured motorist, seek legal help. The team at DiBella Law Offices, P.C. is available to answer frequently asked questions and many others about car crash lawsuits in Massachusetts. For more information, reach out to us.
What to Do After a Car Accident with an Uninsured Motorist
It is frustrating and exhausting to deal with a motorist after an accident, especially if this individual is at fault and does not have insurance. In this scenario, take a deep breath and do your best to get through the incident. Here are tips to help you respond to the crash:
Emergency responders will come to the accident scene to assist you and anyone else involved. Medical personnel will provide treatment and bring you to an emergency room as needed. Police officers will collect information and use it to prepare an accident report.
Get the contact information of the at-fault driver and anyone else who saw your crash happen. Also, capture photos and videos from the collision scene on your smartphone. These can be used in conjunction with dashcam footage, medical records, and other evidence to help you get money for your losses.
Report the Crash to Your Insurance Company
Tell your insurer about your accident and explain that the other motorist involved does not have coverage. Do not take any responsibility for your accident. If you do, you could compromise your ability to get compensation.
Hire a Car Accident Lawyer in Massachusetts
Choose a car accident attorney in Massachusetts who has helped their clients get outstanding case results. Your lawyer will calculate your damages. They will file your lawsuit before you lose the opportunity to do so.
Per Massachusetts Laws, Ch. 260, § 2A, there is a three-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims. This gives you a maximum of three years from the date of your auto collision to sue for damages. Your lawyer submits your claim within this window and then works with you to build your case.
We've offered crucial support and guidance to individuals who have suffered injuries, ensuring their financial and emotional well-being.
What It Takes to Get Compensation from an Uninsured Motorist
If you file a lawsuit against an uninsured motorist, expect a legal battle. The at-fault driver may contact you and push you to accept a settlement. If you approve this offer, you may not get enough money to cover all of your accident-related losses.
The defendant in your lawsuit may also try to get you to say that you were partly responsible for your accident. Massachusetts has a comparative negligence statute. If you are found to be more than 50% responsible for your accident, you cannot recover damages.
To get compensation from an uninsured motorist, it is in your best interests to hire a car accident lawyer. DiBella Law Offices, P.C. will connect you with a lawyer who takes your auto crash case personally. To schedule a free case consultation, contact us today.