Can I Lose My House Due to At-Fault Car Accident?
Every state – including California – has good reason to require all drivers to obtain some form of liability insurance in order to register a vehicle. Liability insurance protects at-fault drivers and accident victims alike. With at-fault drivers, their liability coverage pays out injury claims on their behalf. For injured motorists, a liability policy improves their chances of recovering compensation for their injuries.
Unfortunately, car accident injury claims do not always go smoothly. While liability insurance coverage is mandatory, many drivers do not maintain their policy. Another factor that many people do not consider is that liability policies have a maximum amount of compensation they will pay. Any losses above and beyond the policy limits are the at-fault driver’s responsibility.
In either of these cases, a judgment in a personal injury case could have a disastrous impact on your finances. Your savings, your personal property, and even your home could be at risk if you are found to be liable for the crash. Following a car accident, it is always best to speak with a Los Angeles car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Facing car accident lawsuits
If you are responsible for causing a car accident, you could face a lawsuit regardless of whether or not you have liability insurance. One of the important benefits of liability insurance is that your insurer will provide for your defense counsel. That said, you could face serious financial liability in cases involving major injuries. This is true whether or not you have liability coverage. Your liability insurance will not be enough to protect your assets – including your home – if your policy limits are inadequate.
Insurance policy limits
Every liability policy has some form of policy limits. This is a cap on the maximum amount of benefits the insurance company is required to pay. California has a minimum amount of liability coverage. According to state law, all drivers must carry at least:
- $15,000 in bodily injury coverage per person per injury
- $30,000 in bodily injury coverage per accident
- $5,000 in property damage liability
The problem many motorists have following a crash is that these limits fall well short of the total financial losses in an accident. Medical bills can quickly exceed $15,000 for a single person, and vehicle damage routinely exceeds the $5,000 minimum. If you are injured in an accident, experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyers can assist you with your claim.
The loss of your property
If you the court rules against you at trial, you could be facing a formal judgment showing that you owe the plaintiff significant compensation. To meet this obligation, you might have to sell your property – even your home in some cases. When you lack the assets to pay the judgment against you, it is possible that you could be forced into bankruptcy. Given what is at risk, it is vital that you carry the appropriate amount of liability insurance when you get behind the wheel.
Let an experienced attorney help
If you are involved in a car accident, your first instinct might be to take responsibility for causing the crash. Even if you feel responsible, it is crucial that you discuss your case with dedicated Los Angeles car accident attorneys before ever admitting fault. It is possible that despite your instincts, the other driver was responsible for the crash.
At Ellis Injury Law, we have extensive experience fighting for the rights of injury victims after a car accident. We understand the stress that can come with a serious injury and we are ready to help you during this difficult time. To discuss your options after an accident, schedule a free consultation with Ellis Injury Law as soon as possible.