I keep seeing people ask this same question and there is no response out there. So, here is the answer. I guess I need to first ask the question: If you are involved in an auto accident and you do not have insurance, are you at fault?
Since there are several issues here, I will break it down into more manageable parts.
- If you are not at fault, as in you are rear ended, you are not at fault for causing the accident. I have had one collection agency, CCS, continually tell me that my clients are at fault solely because they are uninsured. Wrong. It is just flat out wrong. There is no other way to put it. I continually write letters to CCS letting them know this and they continue to ignore me. However, I have never come across a case in California where a party is at fault BECAUSE they do not have insurance.
- Other people will tell you that you are at fault. See my comments about CCS above. Insurance adjusters will also tell you that you are at fault, or that you are a percentage at fault. They treat people with insurance different from those with no insurance. I do not know why, but they do. Again, if you are not at fault for the accident, your insurance, or lack thereof, does not effect this.
- If you do not have insurance, Prop 213 will limit your recovery. You will only be able to recover your economic damages. In other words, the damage to your car, your medical bills and your lost wages, if any. You will not be able to get “pain and suffering.”
I hope this clears up this issue. I know that you hear that you are at fault for not having insurance. When that happens, you should consult an attorney immediately.