Will Proposition 213 Keep You from Getting the Compensation You Deserve? Not Necessarily
It has been more than 20 years since Proposition 213 passed in California and it is still preventing accident victims from getting the compensation they are owed in certain situations. The bad news is that if you are in a car accident and do not have insurance, you may be unable to recover damages even if you were not at fault for the accident.
The good news is that there are exceptions. Keep reading to find out what they are and how a personal injury attorney can help you get what you are owed. Contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free legal consultation to learn more.
Defining Prop 213
First, let us discuss what Prop 213 is. It was passed back in 1996 (thanks in part to support from the car insurance industry) and it limits the types of damages that can be recovered when a person is injured in an accident they did not cause. It states that if a person does not have car insurance at the time of the accident, they cannot recover non-economic damages.
This means they can recover damages such as medical cost, lost wages, and property damage, but they cannot recover damages for pain and suffering, long-term disability, emotional distress, and others. It is essentially punishment for not having insurance and Prop 213 even applies if you were driving someone else’s car and their vehicle was not insured.
There Are Exceptions to Prop 213
If you are denied coverage due to Prop 213, it is important to know that there are exceptions that may apply to you. For example, if you were driving your employer’s vehicle and it was not insured, if the accident occurred on private property, if the at-fault driver was convicted of a DUI as a result of the accident, or if the car you were driving did not have insurance but you have insurance on your car and for yourself, then Prop 213 does not apply.
What to Do if the Insurance Company Refuses to Pay Non-Economic Damages
If you find yourself denied coverage for non-economic damages due to Prop 213, you do not simply have to accept what the insurance company is tell you. You have a right to have all the facts considered. We recommend that you contact an attorney as soon as possible. Do not sign any settlement until you have had a chance to talk to an attorney. Doing so can prevent you from being able to sue for additional damages.
When you work with Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas you can count on us to offer our honest advice of your options. It may be that Prop 213 applies to you and you can only expect to be reimbursed for noneconomic damages, but it may be that there is an exception you do not know about. Call us at 909-982-0707 to find out where your case lies.