Money is often the farthest thing from your mind in the moments after a car crash. You're probably taking stock of your injuries and trying to determine how much time it will take to resolve all the issues at the scene of the crash. Even if you know your car is wrecked, you may not feel worried about your financial situation, instead assuming that things will work out just fine.
After all, you have a solid insurance policy. What you may not understand is that your Georgia insurance policy actually protects you from claims by other people. In other words, that policy won't offer you any personal financial protection in the event of a crash unless you have special riders in your policy. You will be dependent on the policy provided by the other driver.
Some people carry very little insurance or don't carry it at all
You would probably feel surprised to learn that some drivers you cross paths with don't have an active insurance policy. It's hard to exactly track, but many people let their insurance policies lapse without paying their monthly premiums. That means they don't have coverage if they cause a crash, even if they have an insurance card on hand to give you.
If you get into a crash with that person, there is no liability coverage for your property damage losses or medical bills. Even if they do have insurance, they may carry just the cheapest policy that they can place on their vehicle, instead of one that offers decent financial protections. You could find yourself dealing with a policy that offers as little as $25,000 for property damage and the same amount for medical care.
You don't need to be a financial expert to see how your costs could easily exceed those relatively low minimum coverage amounts. Even in the event that someone has a robust policy, the sad truth is that the injuries from car accidents can have hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of financial impact.
In addition to medical costs, there are also the expenses related to lost wages to consider. Even a generous insurance policy may not do enough to offset the financial impact of the collision.
An attorney can help you explore your options
Determining liability after a crash is often difficult. Sometimes, multiple people share partial responsibility. Talking with an attorney about the specifics of your collision and reviewing the police report, is often a good way to start.
From there, you can try to determine what insurance claims you need to make or if filing a civil lawsuit is the best way for you to recoup your financial losses. A civil lawsuit can help if the other driver didn't have a policy or enough coverage to protect you after a crash.