Normally, if you get into a car accident, you can file a claim against the other driver’s insurance policy. And that works as long as their policy covers all of your damages. However, if your damages exceed their coverage, you’ll have to pursue the other driver personally.
If the accident is very serious, your injuries could be quite severe. The same will be true for the other driver. In fact, they could be so serious that he passes away. If this happens, who do you pursue? How do you get paid the difference?
This is when it gets complicated. If the other driver doesn’t survive the accident, you’ll have to file a claim against his estate. This could mean that you never recover a dime. It really depends on what kind of assets he had when he passed away.
If you’re involved in an accident where the other driver passes away, you need to contact a car accident lawyer in Tampa.
Your Car Accident Lawyer in Tampa Will Deal with the Insurance Company First
The first thing you need to do is file a claim against the other driver’s insurance policy. You need to see if they pay your claim before you do anything further. If they pay your entire claim, great. The matter will be resolved quickly.
What is they deny your claim? Or, what if they only cover part of your claim? You’ll have no choice but to file a lawsuit against the other driver. If he does pass away in the accident, you’ll have to file a claim against his estate.
The problem with filing an estate claim is that it can take forever to pay. There’s also a chance that you won’t recover a dime. If their estate is insolvent or doesn’t have enough money to pay all the creditors, you will not recover all of your damages.
Your Car Accident Lawyer in Tampa Will File a Claim Against the Estate
When someone passes away, someone is appointed executor of their estate. The executor has to open an estate with the court. They notify all of the creditors that their loved one has passed away. Then they have to gather all of the assets.
The estate assets include:
- Real property (house, rental properties, vacation homes, etc.)
- Bank accounts and cash
- Stocks, bonds, CDs
- Personal property (car, jewelry, etc.)
The problem is, the decedent may die with no assets. Or, their assets aren’t sufficient to pay all of their creditors. If this happens, your car accident lawyer in Tampa will have to try to negotiate a settlement of your claim.
The estate attorney is usually willing to settle some of the estate claims. It depends on how many secured creditors there are. Secured creditors are the ones whose debt is secured by property. For example, a mortgage company is a secured creditor. These creditors have to be paid before anybody else.
If there is anything left over after these creditors are paid, the rest is divided among the rest of the creditors. You may get a portion of your claim. You may get nothing.
Your Car Accident Lawyer in Tampa Will Make Sure Your Medical Bills are Covered
The good news is, your medical bills should be covered no matter what. If the other driver passes away with no assets, you’ll have to rely on your personal insurance to cover your medical bills.
If your bills exceed the driver’s policy and your own, your car accident lawyer in Tampa will need to step in. He can try to get your medical expenses covered by Medicare or Medicaid. When push comes to shove, they may be responsible for ensuring you get the medical care you need.
Just keep in mind, if your case ever does settle, you will have to reimburse the State for a portion of your medical bills.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer in Tampa Today
If you get into a car accident and the other driver dies, you need to contact a car accident lawyer in Tampa. He can help you file a claim against the insurance company. He can also contact the decedent’s estate attorney on your behalf.
If the other driver dies with no estate, you may have a hard time recovering damages. At a minimum, you will probably have your medical expenses covered. But when it comes to pain and suffering and lose wages, you may walk away with nothing.
Call and schedule your free initial consultation today. You can ask any questions you may have. Your car accident lawyer in Tampa can also give you an idea of what you’re up against. The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you settle your case.
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