California law requires that all drivers carry insurance on their vehicles, including liability coverage to pay for any claims caused by the driver injuring another person in a car accident. Unfortunately, a lot of California drivers have no insurance, in violation of the law. Many others carry only the minimum required by law, which is generally not enough to cover damages in a case of serious injury.
If you have been injured in an auto accident caused by a negligent driver without adequate insurance, you may still have the ability to recover damages. You can do this by making a claim against the uninsured motorist coverage on your own vehicle.
The California Insurance Code requires that uninsured motorist coverage be included in all automobile insurance policies, unless the customer has agreed in writing to delete it. The statute requires that uninsured motorist coverage be in at least the amounts of liability coverage provided in your policy, but need not be in excess of $30,000 per person or $60,000 per accident. Your uninsured coverage will pay the damages the negligent driver's insurer would have paid, if that driver had adequate insurance.
An uninsured motorist is defined in the statute to include a motorist who has insurance but not enough to cover all the injuries that driver caused. It also provides coverage even if you are a pedestrian injured by a motor vehicle.
The information in this post is intended only as general information and should not be considered specific legal advice. If you have been injured by an uninsured or uninsured motorist, a California personal injury law firm can help identify all potential sources for recovery.
Source: Cal. Ins. Code § 11580.2(a) (1) & (m), accessed Dec. 6, 2014