Q What insurance pays for my injury if I am walking and hit by a car?
There are several possibilities, all of which depend on who has what kind of car insurance.
1. If the driver was at fault, his insurance will pay for medical expenses and pain and suffering, both past and future, that are related to the injury. However, this is liability coverage and will only pay out at the end of the process -- after you prove the driver was at fault and what the total amount of damages are. So, that will not help pay bills as you get treatment. Also, if you were at fault in any way -- that is, you did not look before stepping out in front of the car -- the driver's liability coverage will not pay at all. This is called "contributory negligence" (your negligence contributed to your injury) and is a total bar to your being able to obtain compensation from the driver.
2. If your car insurance has medical expense benefits, sometimes called medpay, the portion of your medical bils that are not covered by your health insurance (that is, your out-of-pocket expenses and deductible) will be paid under this part of your car insurance, even though you were not in your car when you were injured. Many people do not understand the importance of this coverage. It follows you everywhere and covers losses you sustain if a motor vehicle is involved. It covers you and your family, and you should have very high limits.
3. If the driver was at fault but had no insurance, your uninsured motorist coverage will take the place of the other driver's liability coverage and "act like" the coverage in #1 above. Lots of people think that this coverage is like buying insurance for the other driver. However, since this coverage protects you and your family, you should buy the most coverage your insurance company will sell you. It will not be expensive. I promise. (By the way, it is perfectly legal to own and drive a car in Virginia that is uninsured, so there are plenty of uninsured cars being driven in Virginia.)
It is so important that Virginia motorists have enough insurance that Rohrstaff Law Firm offers a FREE evaluation of your insurance policy. Contact us through the form on the right, or call 703-260-6070 or email Janelle@RohrstaffLaw.com and ask for your free insurance evaluation. (Rohrstaff Law Firm gets no fee for evaluating car insurance policies and suggesting changes to coverage. That is, no one, including any insurance company, pays us for offering this free service.)