Uninsured Motorist Laws in Washington
No one wants to be involved in a car accident, but being an uninsured driver in Washington can create additional issues both legally and financially.
If you drive a vehicle that is required to be registered in the State of Washington, the minimum insurance requirements are:
- $25,000 of insurance coverage for bodily injury or death of 1 person in any single accident.
- $50,000 of bodily injury or death of 2 or more people in any single accident.
- $10,000 of property damage coverage in any single accident.
There are exceptions for those who are self-insured, covered with a certificate of deposit, or covered by a liability bond. If you are driving a vehicle that is required to be registered in another state, you will need to have the insurance required by that state. Additionally, you must have proof of insurance available to show to a law enforcement officer. Driving without insurance can result in a fine of $550 or more.
Washington Financial Responsibility Law for Uninsured Drivers
As an uninsured driver, if you are involved in an auto accident, your driver’s license can be suspended “if there is a reasonable possibility that a court will make a judgment against” you and there are at least $1000 in damages and any bodily injuries as a result of the collision. This can also apply to the owner of an uninsured vehicle. While your license is suspended, you cannot drive or apply for a license or permit. The license suspension remains in effect for three years from the collision date. It is possible to appeal a suspension or to have your license reinstated.
Was The Uninsured Driver at Fault?
In accidents where the other driver was 100% at fault, you will be able to pursue compensation and damages from their insurance company if they are insured. Washington is a comparative negligence state. This means that each driver’s responsibility for the accident is given a value, usually expressed as a percentage, and the monetary damages are divided accordingly. This is an important factor in an auto accident case, and an experienced lawyer can help you maximize your claim while helping to minimize any potential negligence assigned to you. Experience in negotiating with insurance companies and potentially litigating the case in court will help ensure that you receive the maximum amount possible.
When an uninsured motorist is found to be at fault in a collision, you can be held personally liable. This can mean that you will personally have to pay for the damages to the other driver’s vehicle as well as any hospital bills and medical care they might need. You will also be paying out of pocket for your own car repairs and any injuries you have. If you find yourself in this situation, you will want to consult an attorney as soon as possible to aid you in protecting yourself from potentially expensive legal judgments.
Contact us today for a free consultation about your auto accident case. Our experienced legal team is available at (206) 202- 5137 or firstname.lastname@example.org