If I Use My Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Virginia Am I Letting the At-Fault Driver Off Easy?
The answer is no. You are not letting the at-fault driver off easy. While it is natural to be angry at the at-fault driver for not having insurance and negligently injuring you, you should use your uninsured motorist coverage to protect yourself.
Using the uninsured motorist coverage is the most realistic way to get paid fairly following an accident. If you use the insurance coverage to negotiate a settlement, or go to court and win a judgment, are you guaranteed payment for your damages up to the amount of uninsured motorist coverage.
Suing the uninsured at-fault driver directly without underlying uninsured motorist coverage in place to pay a judgment is usually not worth the trouble or expense. Suppose you spend the money to sue someone without insurance and don’t have, or decline to use, your uninsured motorist coverage. A judge or a jury could award you a significant amount of money, however without the underlying insurance company in place to pay you, it will be up to you to attempt the collect the money from the uninsured driver. Often the at-fault driver will not have the money to pay the judgment, and may decide to declare bankruptcy and possibly discharge the obligation to you.
By using your uninsured motorist coverage you are not letting the at-fault driver off easy. You are protecting yourself.
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