Who Pays Settlement Money in Car Accident Lawsuits?

Posted on behalf of Phillips Law Group on Mar 05, 2010 in Auto Accidents

If you have been involved in an auto accident and you're not at fault, you may be considering the possibility of protecting your rights by way of a legal claim against the other driver under the laws of personal injury. Many of these actions that are filed are ultimately settled out of court, and many others are settled before a lawsuit is ever filed in the first place. However, a high number of people are not sure about which party or parties actually pays the money involved in a settlement. While working with an Arizona auto accident lawyer will almost certainly provide you with a better opportunity to recover a fair and equitable settlement, it may be of aid to understand the three different possible sources of funding for settlement payments.

Settlement Payment Source One - The Other Driver's Insurance Company

One of the main sources of settlement payments is the insurance company of the driver who is at fault in an accident. That's one of the reasons that these policies exist - to protect the policyholders from financial ruin if an accident occurs and the policyholder is found liable. However, it should be noted that just about every auto insurance policy has limits for settlement payments, which means that the insurance company will only fund settlements up to a certain amount and not beyond that point.

Settlement Payment Source Two - The Other Driver

The driver who is found at fault in an accident could wind up having to pay settlement funds from his or her own assets in two different situations. One circumstance would be in line with what was discussed above - if the settlement is for a greater amount than the policy limit on that driver's insurance coverage, the other driver could be personally responsible for any remaining amount. The other circumstance involves an accident where the at-fault driver does not have insurance. Clearly, the at-fault driver would be at least the first source of funding for a settlement.

Settlement Source Three - Your Own Insurance

The third source of settlement funding that sometimes comes to pass is your own insurance coverage. Many people have as part of their coverage insurance that deals with uninsured or under-insured motorists. You pay premiums on this part of your policy to protect yourself in case an accident occurs and the other driver does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to pay a settlement. This can also be an option if the other driver simply does not have the assets to help pay for your settlement amount.

If you or someone you love has been involved in an auto accident that was not your fault, you need the help of an Arizona auto accident lawyer who understands the particularities involved with settlement negotiation and settlement payment. Contact Phillips Law Group today to schedule a free initial consultation.

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