Every state operates under a “fault” or “no-fault” system. The main differences between fault and no-fault are whether victims have the right to sue and who is responsible for damages after a car accident. It is essential to understand what fault and no-fault mean when dealing with car insurance and auto collisions.
What Is No-Fault?
No-fault means that, after an accident, victims do not have to prove fault to recover damages. Compensation for injured parties usually comes from their own personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. In no-fault states, victims can sue at-fault drivers only if the policy limits do not provide enough compensation or they have sustained severe injuries.
Alabama Is a Fault State
Alabama follows a fault-based compensation system. This means that, after a car accident, the person who caused the accident is responsible for compensating the injured party.
Drivers in fault states have more options to receive compensation for their injuries after an accident. If you suffered injuries in a car accident, you can:
- File a claim with your own insurance company;
- File a claim with the other driver’s insurance provider; or
- File a personal injury claim against the other driver.
Many factors play a part in determining the best course of action for your case. An Alabama car accident attorney can review your case and discuss options, depending on the circumstances.
Alabama Auto Insurance Laws
Alabama has a mandatory liability insurance law that requires drivers to have liability insurance to operate a vehicle. Liability insurance must meet minimum requirements, including:
- Bodily injury coverage of $25,000 per person and up to $50,000 per accident; and
- Property damage coverage of $25,000 per accident.
While this is only the minimum insurance required, you should consider higher limits to protect yourself further.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Insurance
Aside from the minimum liability insurance, you may also opt to purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance. This insurance provides an injured driver with compensation after an accident if the at-fault driver doesn’t have enough, or any, insurance.
Driving Without Insurance
If you violate the mandatory liability insurance law and fail to carry the minimum liability insurance, you may face repercussions. If you are caught driving without insurance, you may have to pay a fine of at least $500 for the first offense. Subsequent offenses can result in $1,000 fines and suspension of your driver license for up to six months.
Contact An Alabama Car Accident Attorney
After a car accident, it is helpful to contact an attorney as soon as possible. An experienced car accident attorney will assess your situation and offer valuable legal advice with a goal of maximum compensation.
Fob James Law Firm has over 40 years of experience advocating for injured victims. We offer the highest quality service while fighting for just compensation. Contact us today, and let’s discuss your case.