As a “fault” based insurance state, anyone involved in an accident in California may file a claim with their own insurer or with the at fault party’s insurer. It is in your best interest to hire an experienced accident attorney; especially when things become more complicated when one of more of the parties are “self-insured.”
California law requires each driver to have car insurance of a minimum amount. However, it is not essential to carry an insurance policy with an auto insurance company. Drivers may choose to self-insure their vehicle. This path requires a $35,000 deposit (in cash) with the DMV or a certificate saying you are self-insured (also from the DMV).
Finally, a driver may get a surety bond worth $35,000 from a company licensed in California. If you ever get into a crash with a driver who is self-insured, contact a qualified accident attorney in Los Angeles to help you through the process.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Self-Insurance
The idea of self-insurance may appeal to drivers who have spent years paying for auto insurance without ever making a claim. While these costs may seem unnecessary over time – similar to someone paying for health insurance without getting sick – taking the route of self-insurance can leave you exposed when you are involved in an accident.
Most California insurance companies offer policies well in excess of the minimum $15,000 per person/$30,000 per claim required in California. In addition, an insurer helps you work through a claim when you have had an accident, whereas you have to pay for the cost of defending yourself when you are self-insured. Finally, when it comes time to pay for damages, you may have to pay out of your own pocket.
Highly experienced and reputable auto accident attorneys in Los Angeles such as the professionals at West Coast Trial Lawyers can help you if you are involved in an accident with a self-insured driver or considering this type of policy for yourself. For further information or to schedule an appointment please contact us at (888) 539-9582 or visit www.WestCoastTrialLawyers.com.