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Insurance: options when hit by uninsured motorist

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Comments

  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,278
    Of course the "safe" driver's would wail and moan about subsidizing "unsafe" driver's but that argument is silly because if you hit someone you are no longer a "safe" driver.

    ___________

    Actually your argument is silly. Safe driver's don't cause accidents, as the vast majority of accidents are truly not an accident, but a "negligent" or "incompetent." In no fault insurance States costs are skyrocketing for the simple fact that if you are never to blame you might as well not worry about driving safely. You can cause as many accidents as you like and not pay any consequences, and therefore there is no "incentive" to drive safely.

    It makes a huge difference. I'm convinced that less than 10% of the drivers out there cause over 90% of the claims costs.
  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,278
    What about taking lots of pictures of the accident scene, and then moving the vehicles so traffic can flow? The pictures will document what had been the situation before anything was altered.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,661
    I suppose it you MUST move the vehicles, then taking about 3,000 photos from different angles, including angles from local skyscrapers, the space station, the moon, and also thermographic images from 100 feet underground, and from any local sinkhole, MAY suffice to prove to an investigating officer what happened...you may also want about 30 minutes of video, certified by Dino De Laurentiis or Cecil B DeMille to the accuracy of the video, may be added...other than that, moving the cars will, IMO, confuse the average officer, who just may be unwilling to commit on paper who was "at fault" because he/she simply is no longer sure, kind of like disturbing the crime scene for the NCIS investigators, they do not see the scene as it really is/was...your mileage may vary...
  • michaellmichaell Posts: 4,300
    Here in Colorado there is a law that stipulates you must move vehicles involved in an accident out of the flow of traffic.

    Sorry, but if I'm ever in an accident, I'd rather take the fine than not have the investigating officer have an accurate as possible perspective of the scene.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,661
    "I'd rather take the fine than not have the investigating officer have an accurate as possible perspective of the scene."

    That is exactly my point...I hesitate to recommend that someone break the law, but I believe that law is truly counter to the interests of the victim in the wreck...sure, by not moving the cars, you cause a traffic backup, but so does a cop who pulls someone to the shoulder to issue a ticket for a taillight that does not work...

    If, by moving the cars, it alters the reality of who was at fault, then the law does a disservice to the victim by making them move the cars before the police arrive, simply because it is almost always the police who determine who is at fault, unless you have multiple independent witnesses, and you must hope those witnesses actually stop and wait for the police, rather than head to work like the rest of the traffic...

    Take the additional fine for blocking traffic which will cost a pittance, but at least you won't be charged with the accident when the cop views the scene...

    In GA, if the cop is not sure, they can charge both parties equally, which means neither side recovers from the other, which also means that the other driver, who WAS at fault, gets away with it, and his insurance won't fix your car or your injuries, so you pay for your deductible (probably a much higher amount than the "blocked traffic" ticket) and you do not recover for your injuries...

    Preserve the scene...stay there until the cop arrives...and make the other guy pay for his poor driving...
  • michaellmichaell Posts: 4,300
    Preserve the scene...stay there until the cop arrives...and make the other guy pay for his poor driving...

    Exactly!
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 790
    marsha- you know we have the "If you steer it, clear it" law here in Georgia. =)

    But it only applies if I am at-fault, which is possible in theory I suppose, but could never happen....well, probably couldn't happen, not again....just kidding, although it has been 7.5yrs since my last at-fault accident and it caused less than $1000 damage to the other car. I was driving my commuter car, a 14yr old Accord with a bad paint job, that only had liability, so there was no claim on it. Staying under $1000 actually had little impact on my premium. It was only when I got a ticket two years later that I had a problem, then I was surcharged for both the accident and the speeding ticket for a year and it almost doubled my insurance premium!

    After that one rough year, the accident was over three years old and most insurers didn't count it. I had to switch companies because the one I had for that year refused to recalculate my renewal premium without the accident because the renewal offer was sent out six days before the 3-year anniversary of the accident...I followed the "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em" philosophy apparently, otherwise I have no idea how and why I became an insurance agent!?!?!
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 790
    This probably makes me an awful person (not really), but I always go ahead and call 911 before I get out of the car and make sure the other driver or anyone in their car is okay. If it isn't obvious that they're not harmed, I'll start walking toward them while I'm on the phone with 911. But by doing that, it eliminates them trying to get you to settle it privately and not involve the police or insurance. It also gets the cops en route if the other driver decides to leave the scene or attempt to do so. Not to mention that it reduces the length you stand there waiting with the other driver, which is usually very uncomfortable and awkward. It's also during that time that some people feel the need to apologize or say other things that NO ONE should EVER say at the scene of an accident, even if it's obvious to you and everyone else that you were at fault!

    I also can attest to the value of photos! Back in 2007, I was about two miles away from my office and turned onto the residential street that eventually turns commercial, which is where my office is located. There is a very small shopping center with an ATM in the parking lot on the left side and a restaurant on the right side as you turn onto the road. The road intersects with the 4-lane major highway (which is where I was coming from) at very sharp angle that makes left turns all but impossible but not illegal.

    As I turned onto the road, a city police officer leaving the ATM pulled out, drove right across his lane and into mine, hitting me head-on! I had watched the cops do the same thing many times before, they pulled into the wrong lane to make that hard left turn, despite oncoming traffic. It was illegal, period...I was rattled, but my paranoia was fully intact, so I grabbed my cell phone and started snapping photos from inside the car, then of the yellow line (showing I was in my lane) as I opened the door, it was clicking at the rate of a machine gun, or it sound like it! He started barking for me to stop as soon as he got out of the car, but I didn't. He told me to stop again and that he was going to confiscate my phone, so I told him I had already sent over a dozen photos to my my office and our in-house attorney.

    I was bluffing, but he backed down. Then I got busted in the lie when my friend, co-worker AND my company's in-house-counsel stopped to see if I was okay! I covered by saying I had sent them to her email, I had idea if she was at work yet or not. But it didn't matter at that point, even if I had said I totally lied to make you back off, all that mattered was I had MY attorney right at the scene of the accident and she saw it before either car had been moved!

    The cop who hit me got out his pad to start writing up the accident, but my friend stopped him (OBJECTION!). She scolded him and said that it was clearly a conflict of interest and she insisted on a Georgia State Trooper, NOT another officer from the same city as the one who hit me. The Trooper showed up and, while the other cop was making a phone call, I took a chance and did some heavy name-dropping. My mom's best friend's husband was head of the Executive Secuirty Division until his retirement the previous year. (Executive Security Division = Secret Service, Georgia-style) That meant he ranked as the second highest officer in the Georgia State Patrol, only The Commissioner ranked above him. He retired early due to a service-related injury (he took a few shots in the leg and hip). The Trooper asked me if he had the surgery to repair his hip yet and, if so, how was he doing. I told him that he had the surgery a few months earlier, at the end of March because I remember taking them dinner on April 1st and we laughed about it being April Fool's Day! =)

    He wrote it up the way it happened and didn't give the cop any slack. He didn't do anything to skew it in my favor, but just stuck to the facts based on what he saw. He noted in the report that the other driver (cop) was not cited, but all the information available strongly suggested that he was at-fault in the collision! Worked for me, all I wanted was my car fixed and not get stuck with a ticket or a claim my insurance policy because a cop lied his way out of taking responsibility! And that's what I got...

    I called my the wife of the retired trooper I mentioned and told her about the accident and asked if she recognized the name of the trooper that responded to the accident. I told her what he asked me and she cackled for a while, then told me that they were very good friends with that trooper and his wife. In fact, they had visited her husband in the hospital when he had the surgery on his hip AND they had dinner with them a few nights after I brought them dinner. His wife asked if she could get the recipe for my Italian Creme Cake (it's called a bakery in the next county and off the beaten path)!

    That dude was testing my name dropping and thankfully I passed with flying colors! It makes me wonder what would have happened if I hadn't checked out, I'm guessing he would have found a way to deflect blame from the city cop, and might have put the blame on me, who knows.,..I don't trust cops, even ones I've known my whole life! So my advice is to call 911, start snapping photos at super-human speed THEN, only when you have maxed out your camera/phone's capacity (over 5,000 photos on my phone), then you can check to make sure everyone else is okay! Start with people in your own car, if they're breathing (consciousness isn't necessary if they have a pulse) move on to the occupants of the other cadr! If you are certain that you were at-fault, ignore any occupants in your own car and check on the other driver and anyone is that car first! They are the ones who can sue you for millions, so you want to make sure they're not seriously injured...but if they appear to be mortally wounded, place a pillow or other thick cloth material over their nose and mouth and hold firmly for at least two minutes....or until they quit fighting....it's the humane thing to do.....
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,661
    you must protect yourself, esp if you are in a wreck with an at-fault cop, because the system will protect them until the evidence is overwhelming...which is why I say keep the scene intact until police arrive...

    "marsha- you know we have the "If you steer it, clear it" law here in Georgia. =)"

    As I said, protect yourself...once those cars are moved, few officers will gamble and "decide" who is at fault, they will just split the difference, which means YOU pay for your damages and your injuries and your medical treatment and no $$$ for your injuries...

    Quote the law all you want...the decision is yours...

    BTW, all you can get is a ticket for not moving the cars...the tickety may be $100 but your damages could be in the $1000s, possibly mega-$1000s...you make the choice...
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