If you’ve been involved in a car accident, it’s essential to collect insurance information from the other involved parties so you can effectively pursue compensation. Below, you can learn how to find out if someone has auto insurance coverage and what to do if the other party doesn’t have coverage.
How to Find Out if Someone Has Auto Insurance Coverage
One of the easiest ways to find out if someone has auto insurance coverage is to ask them at the scene of an accident. Remain calm when you ask them, and treat the interaction like a business transaction. Request their information and be ready to write it down or record it on your phone. Ideally, you should collect the driver’s name, the name of their insurance company, and their insurance policy number.
You can also collect the driver’s contact information so you can contact them if you need to clarify any of their information. You only need to provide your phone number and email address. It’s not necessary to give them your personal address, as each of their respective insurance companies can pull up this information if necessary. It also helps them maintain a sense of privacy. Be ready to provide your name, contact information, the name of your insurance company, and your insurance policy number.
If you were unable to collect the necessary information from the other party at the scene of the accident, there are other ways to determine whether someone has auto insurance coverage. You may seek assistance from the police. Visit your local police department and provide the incident report and the other party’s license plate number. If the police officer sees that you have a valid reason for inquiring about another driver’s insurance information, they’ll likely provide it to you.
It’s also possible to acquire insurance information on another motorist from your local Department of Motor Vehicles. When you visit your local DMV, be sure to provide verifiable information and a valid reason for your request. Otherwise, the DMV may deny your request.
What To Do If a Driver Refuses To Give You Their Insurance Information
If you ask a driver for their insurance information at the scene of an accident, they may refuse to give it to you. Instead of confronting the driver further and insisting on the provision of their information, avoid further interaction. The police will acquire the information on your behalf and demand the provision of it.
What To Do If the Other Party Doesn’t Have Auto Insurance Coverage
If the other party doesn’t have auto insurance, you can contact your insurance company to inform the company of the situation. It’s also a good idea to contact your insurance company if a driver has provided you with incomplete or inaccurate information about their insurance. You may provide your insurance company with pertinent information, including witness reports and pictures of the scene.
You may also provide the crash report, which is the official report that details the incident. This report includes such information as the cause of the accident, the road conditions at the time, the passengers’ and drivers’ names, and the vehicles involved. Your insurance company can use the information you provide to investigate the accident further and assess who was at fault for the accident. If you’re not at fault in an at-fault state, you may be able to receive compensation.
What Kind of Auto Insurance Includes Hit-and-Runs?
Here are some types of auto insurance that will likely cover some form of damages that hit-and-runs inflict:
- Personal injury protection: Provides compensation for your lost wages and medical expenses
- Medical payments coverage: Provides compensation for your medical bills
- Collision coverage: Provides coverage for collisions with other vehicles no matter whose fault it was
- Uninsured motorist coverage: Provides coverage for collisions that involve an uninsured driver
- Underinsured motorist coverage: Provides coverage for collisions that involve an underinsured driver who doesn’t have high enough liability limits to cover high expenses
What Happens If I’m in an Auto Accident Without Insurance?
Most states require their residents to have auto insurance. If you’re in a car accident while driving an uninsured vehicle or don’t have auto insurance yourself, you’ll likely have to pay a penalty or fine in addition to any injuries or damages you’re liable for. It’s also likely that your state will suspend your driver’s license and registration, meaning you’ll be unable to drive for a certain period of time. If you’re unsure of the details of your insurance or whether you have insurance at all, you can visit your local DMV. This department can provide you with updated information regarding your vehicle’s insurance.
If you have liability insurance but don’t have uninsured motorist coverage in an at-fault state, you may sue the at-fault driver in court. This may allow you to receive compensation for the incurred expenses. However, it’s worth noting that pursuing a settlement or going to trial can require a lot of time and hefty lawyer fees. There’s also no guarantee that you’ll secure a positive outcome, meaning you may have to pay for all incurred expenses out of pocket.
When Is it Helpful to Know Auto Insurance Details?
Here are some instances when it can be helpful to know auto insurance details:
- Driving a friend or family member’s personal vehicle: Always learn the history and auto insurance status of any vehicle you borrow from a family member or friend.
- Driving a vehicle for small business purposes: Some small businesses may have employees complete deliveries using company vehicles. As a small business owner, it’s important to verify that employees have insurance so that they can protect themselves from liability.
- Driving a vehicle that you share with someone to whom you were once married: A vehicle is one asset that a once-married couple may have shared during their time together. During a divorce, it’s important for both individuals to be transparent about the validity of the insurance plan and understand whether they’ve registered the car in both of their names.
- Having a child drive with another child’s parent for a school field trip: Sometimes, a school may recruit parents to volunteer to drive groups of children to and from field trips or other activities. As a parent, it’s important that you verify that anyone who drives your children around can provide proof of a valid insurance policy.
If you want to learn more about having auto insurance coverage, you can browse our website for related articles.
At FIXD, our mission is to make car ownership as simple, easy, and affordable as possible. Our research team utilizes the latest automotive data and insights to create tools and resources that help drivers get peace of mind and save money over the life of their car.