St. Louis Uninsured & Underinsured Driver Lawyers
St. Louis Hit-and-Run Accidents Lawyers
St. Louis Uninsured & Underinsured Driver Attorneys
If you have been injured in a car or other vehicle accident that was caused or partly caused by the fault of another party, Goldson Hoekel, LLC may be able to help you recover the compensation you are entitled to. Many St. Louis injured clients think that if they are in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver they will not be able to recover damages to compensate for their damages. However, this is often not the case. Our experienced personal injury lawyers have helped many clients recover damages from their own insurers, as well from the negligent party’s insurer, by seeking their policy limits through settlement negotiations or litigation, including multidistrict litigation in federal court. We are adept at dealing with insurance companies because we have worked for them in the past and understand their policies and the tactics they utilize in dealing with their injured policyholders.
Accidents Caused by Uninsured Drivers
Under Missouri law, all drivers are required to maintain financial responsibility on their use of motor vehicles and most do so by purchasing automobile liability insurance. An insurance company cannot issue an insurance policy without including "uninsured motorist" (UM) coverage, which covers the insured parties’ injuries in case of an accident caused by an uninsured or hit-and-run driver. Uninsured motorist coverage only covers bodily injuries, but applies to both vehicle and pedestrian accidents.
Accidents Caused by Underinsured Drivers
Unlike uninsured drivers, there is no law directly governing accidents caused by underinsured drivers. Instead, an insurance policy will provide a definition of an uninsured motorist and offer its policyholders optional underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage for damages above the underinsured driver’s policy coverage. In most cases, uninsured motorists are defined as drivers whose insurance policy limits are either less than the UIM coverage limit as defined in the injured party’s insurance policy, or less than Missouri’s statutory minimum. As of 2010, the statutory minimum is $25,000 for bodily injury to or death of one person in any on accident, $50,000 for bodily injury to or death of two or more persons in any one accident, and $10,000 for property damages.
What if I am Partly at Fault?
Missouri law follows a rule of "pure comparative fault." This means that if you are partly at fault in the cause of an accident, the compensation you obtain, whether by settlement, verdict, or insurance payment, may be reduced by the percentage you are at fault. When an insurance company is paying you on a liability claim, they can investigate your accident and assign percentages of fault to each party involved. Based on these percentages, they should offer you an insurance settlement.
If an insurer will not pay all your damages on your claim because they determine you are partly at fault, we can help you by appealing the determination of fault in court. Even if you are partly at fault, you may be able to recover more than your insurer offered to pay. An insurance company is a business and, like most businesses, an insurer may attempt to increase profits by denying or undervaluing your claim. By zealously representing you in court, we can help you obtain the utmost compensation for your injuries.
Missouri Accident Assistance
If you have been injured in an accident that was caused by an uninsured, underinsured, or hit-and-run driver, do not despair. With the help of the legal professionals at the Law Offices of Marshall R. Hoekel, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries. Contact us today for a free consultation your case.