Alaska is considered a "fault" state, which means that every registered driver is required to have insurance coverage that can pay for costs following an accident that they caused. Unfortunately, despite the law, there is a significant percentage of Alaska drivers who are uninsured. In fact, the Insurance Research Council estimates that an average of 1 out of every 7 U.S. drivers has no insurance. What happens, then, when an uninsured motorist in Alaska causes an accident that hurts you? What can you do to pursue compensation?
First, it is important to understand Alaska's minimum requirements for driver liability coverage. According to state law, every driver's policy needs to fulfill the following amounts:
- Property damage coverage up to $25,000
- Bodily injury or dead up to $50,000 for each person
- Bodily injury totaling $100,000 when multiple people are hurt
As you can see, these are significant amounts that would go a long way in satisfying medical bills, lost wages, and other financial issues that can stem from a car accident. When a driver does not have this coverage, they have failed to fulfill a significant responsibility as an Alaska driver.
If you have been hurt by one of these uninsured drivers, then you do have the option to file a claim with your own insurance company to cover damages. This, however, is only possible if you have opted for uninsured motorist (UM) insurance or underinsured motorist (UIM). Not every driver has this kind of coverage and even if they do, the proceeds awarded may not address all the costs associated with your injury.
Taking Legal Action Against the Motorist at Fault
The final course of action for a motorist who has been hurt but cannot recover appropriate funds from an insurance policy is by taking civil action. Filing a personal injury suit against the driver at fault ensures that you can structure a suit that addresses all of your financial needs stemming from your injury. At Johnson Beard & Trueb, PC, we can also help you assert to an insurance company that the proceeds that have awarded are insufficient.
Even if a negligent driver is uninsured in Alaska, injured parties still have legal options. If you have been hurt, then we encourage you to contact our firm today. An experienced Anchorage personal injury attorney on our team can help you review your case, evaluate your insurance coverage, and determine the next, best steps towards getting the restitution you deserve.
Call us today to schedule a free case evaluation.