After an injury that wasn’t your fault, you may be eligible to get compensation from the person or party that was at fault. In an auto accident, the at-fault party is probably the driver of the other vehicle, and in a slip and fall, the at-fault party is probably the owner of the property where you fell. But in most cases, those at-fault parties don’t pay victims out of pocket—instead, the victims’ compensation comes from insurance policies.
However, there are a few scenarios where victims need to pay for their injury-related expenses from their own insurance policies. This is common after accidents where the person who injured them is uninsured or can’t be identified, such as after a hit-and-run crash. But what happens when victims’ insurance policies have lapsed due to non-payment—are they still eligible for compensation through those policies?
You Usually Can’t Get Compensation if Your Policy Had Lapsed When Your Accident Occurred
To remain fully covered by insurance and to be able to count on your policy paying out after an accident, it must be kept current and fully paid 365 days a year. Even if it only lapses for a single day, you’re out of luck getting compensation for your injury-related expenses if your accident happened on that single day where you had no valid coverage.
However, you may still be eligible for compensation if your policy lapsed after the accident occurred, but before you decided to file a settlement claim. Insurance companies may be reluctant to pay if you don’t have active coverage when you file your claim, so it’s important to have an experienced Oklahoma personal injury lawyer on your side as soon as you’re ready to pursue compensation.
How to Minimize the Chances of Your Policy Lapsing
For many people, letting their policies lapse boils down to being unable to afford the premiums, forgetting to pay, or believing that they no longer need their policies. However, having insurance coverage adds another layer of protection for you if you get injured through no fault of your own. You can’t always count on other people to be fully insured or even reachable after an accident.
If your premiums are too expensive, consider dropping some aspects of your policy, switching to a cheaper policy, or changing insurers altogether. And if possible, set up auto-recurring payments online or through your insurer’s app to get peace of mind and know that your policy will be paid in full every month with no action required on your part.
You Don’t Need Insurance to File a Claim Against a Negligent Driver
At one point, Oklahoma required drivers to have active and valid liability insurance to file claims against other drivers who hit them. This rule is also known as the “no pay, no play” law, and it’s in effect in several states in the U.S. Oklahoma declared it unconstitutional in Dec. 2014, and that means that uninsured drivers can still pursue compensation for their damages from other drivers when they were injured because of negligence.
However, you should never count on the other driver having auto insurance—or even being found after a crash. Uninsured and hit-and-run drivers are common in Oklahoma, and if you don’t have insurance or your policy has lapsed, you’ll be forced to pay for your expenses completely out of pocket.
Our Lawyers Can Help You Utilize All Methods of Receiving Compensation
Regardless of your insurance situation, it’s important to reach out to an experienced Oklahoma law firm after an accident or injury that wasn’t your fault. There are many ways to recover compensation after accidents, especially since Oklahoma is no longer a “no pay, no play” state. Simply put, if your accident wasn’t your fault, you can and should be compensated, regardless of how much insurance you have or whether your policy has lapsed.
Contact Parrish DeVaughn Injury Lawyers today for a free consultation. We’ll review the facts of your accident or injury, and if we believe you have a claim, we’ll go to work for you immediately, and you’ll never see a single bill from us unless we get compensation for you.