An uninsured driver is a problem for everyone else on the road. When that driver makes bad decisions and causes an accident, it leaves you with all the burden.
A 2019 report from the Insurance Information Institute found that California ranked within the top 10 states with the highest number of uninsured drivers. That means if Californians have an accident, they have a high likelihood of being in a crash with an uninsured driver.
The California Department of Insurance explains the state tries to avoid uninsured driver issues by mandating a minimum liability insurance coverage requirement. Liability insurance requirements include property damage of $5,000 and bodily injury coverage of $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident.
Anyone driving without auto insurance on California roads is driving illegally. The law requires insurance to operate a vehicle on the roads and to register a vehicle. Officers may ticket you and you could lose your vehicle and driver’s license if you drive without insurance.
If you have an accident with a driver who has no insurance, you may need to make a claim on your uninsured motorist coverage under your own insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage provides you with insurance for accidents where the at-fault party does not have insurance. It is an additional policy option. You will not get it standard if you request minimum coverage, but your insurer must offer it to you.
Your policy may only cover injuries or it may have property damage coverage. It depends on your policy. If you have comprehensive and collision, that would cover any damage to your vehicle. The bodily injury coverage would be the same limits as your liability coverage offers.
If you have this insurance, you can make a claim through it. Your insurer would then handle trying to take the other party to court to collect the money it paid out to you.
Uninsured drivers cost a lot of money and create a hassle after an accident. The state tries to keep them off the road, but there is always the possibility you will encounter one of these people.