Every driver in Missouri should have insurance on their vehicle. When someone doesn’t stop at an intersection or merges into the side of your SUV because they had their eyes on their phone instead of on the road, their insurance will reimburse you.
Missouri has a fault-based insurance system, so the driver who causes the wreck is the one whose policy will pay for the damages they caused. After a crash, you can make claims against the other driver’s insurance for vehicle repair expenses or replacement costs. You can also claim medical bills and income you forfeited because you couldn’t work due to the injury.
Unfortunately, the other driver might not have enough coverage to actually reimburse you.
How much insurance does Missouri require?
The mandatory insurance required under Missouri law can fall a little short of the real costs people incur after a wreck. A driver only has to have $25,000 in property damage coverage. That will have to cover both the repairs to your vehicle and any depreciation in value caused by the crash. $25,000 may not be enough to buy a new vehicle after a wreck that totals your car.
Medical coverage also leaves potential gaps. Drivers have to have $25,000 worth of coverage if they caused a wreck that hurts one person. That minimum coverage increases to $50,000 if two or more people get hurt or die in a collision. If you have losses that exceed that amount of coverage, insurance from the other driver won’t help you.
What can you do if you still have unpaid bills?
You can hold the other driver accountable
Every driver in Missouri has to make a decision about what insurance coverage they carry. If someone does not have enough insurance for a crash, they become the ones ultimately responsible for the other people’s losses.
You can file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver that can reimburse you for any expenses not covered by the insurance policy they have. You may also have the option of making a claim against your own insurance coverage if you have a more comprehensive policy. Collision coverage or underinsured driver coverage could help supplement the policy of the other driver.
Knowing your compensation options after a car crash can help you minimize your losses.