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Hiring a Car Accident Attorney in Your Area

You may have many questions when you are involved in a car wreck, we are here to help! We have compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions by car accident victims suing a car insurance company.

Can I Sue My Car Insurance Company?

If you live in a no-fault state, you may need to sue your own auto insurance to seek compensation.

In no-fault states, motorists file a claim with their insurance provider no matter who was at fault. If your insurance provider does not provide fair compensation or denies your claim, suing them may be the next step.

Can I Sue My Car Insurance Company for Taking Too Long?

Yes, if your insurance company does not address your claim in a fair amount of time or you have an extremely delayed payout, you can sue.

Can I Sue My Car Insurance Company for Not Fixing My Car?

If you experienced vehicle damage in an auto accident and insurance refuses to cover this damage, you may qualify to file a lawsuit.

How Can I Sue My Car Insurance Company?

You can file a lawsuit against an insurance provider once you’ve exhausted the claims and appeals process with the company.

If, after doing this, the company still doesn’t honor your claim or properly compensate you, you can sue the company through your local court. It’s important to work with an experienced car accident lawyer during this process, as it can be complicated and complex.

How Much Can You Sue a Car Insurance Company For?

How much you sue a car insurance company for depends on various factors. Some of these include your medical expenses, property damage, pain and suffering, and other damages that resulted from the crash.

To get an estimate for your car accident lawsuit, reach out to LegalFinders now for a free consultation to discuss your case.

Yes, you can sue an auto insurance company following a car accident if the company wrongfully denies your claim, underpays your claim and closes it out, or otherwise acts in bad faith.

If this is your situation, you may need to file a car accident lawsuit to seek the compensation you rightfully deserve from the insurance company to cover losses and damages.

An auto accident lawyer can be a great resource and assist you throughout the legal process of suing a car insurance company. They can also assist you in getting the maximum settlement possible for your unique case.

Insurance agent writing on clipboard while examining car after accident claim being assessed and processed

About Lawsuits Against Car Insurance Companies

Lawsuits against motor vehicle insurance companies allow accident victims to pursue rightful compensation in the event the company does not provide it.

A victim may sue their own insurance company or the at-fault driver’s insurance company depending on the state’s liability requirements.

A person may choose to file a lawsuit against an insurance company if the company acts in bad faith during the insurance claims process.

Examples of bad faith insurance, or tactics used to get out of paying a claim or paying a claim in full, include:

  • Failing to process and look into a claim within a fair period of time
  • Misrepresentation of an auto insurance policy
  • Requiring unfair demands to prove damages and losses
  • Underpaying claims
  • Denying claims that should legally be honored and paid

Car Accident Claims vs. Car Accident Lawsuits

A car accident claim, also called a personal injury claim, is what is filed by insurance policyholders following an accident.

This claim helps accident victims receive compensation for damages and losses incurred in the accident. A claim may be filed with your insurance company or that of the at-fault party’s.

Car accident lawsuits refer to when an accident victim sues the insurance company for not handling the claim properly.

For example, if the insurance company doesn’t provide a proper payout or address your claim, you may choose to sue the company.

Eligibility for Car Insurance Lawsuits

A person’s eligibility for suing a car insurance company is typically based on how the insurance company handled their claim.

Most often, people whose injury cases have been ignored, denied, dismissed, or underpaid are eligible to file a lawsuit against the company.

If you received a payout from the insurance company that accurately reflects the damages you experienced, you may not be able to sue the company.


Types of Lawsuits to File with Car Insurance Companies

There are different types of lawsuits you can file with an auto insurance provider. Understanding these is an important aspect of the decision to sue in the first place.

The most common types of lawsuits brought against insurance companies on behalf of accident victims include:

  • Personal injury lawsuits: This type of lawsuit is when a person sues a liable party to recover financial compensation for their serious injuries. In this case, the liable party would be the insurance provider.
  • Wrongful death lawsuits: A wrongful death lawsuit is filed by a loved one against an insurance company of the auto accident victim. The purpose of this lawsuit is to seek compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, funeral expenses, and the deceased’s lost wages.


Factors That Affect Car Accident Insurance Lawsuits

Understanding the factors that influence car accident insurance lawsuits can help ensure your case is solid and you receive maximum compensation. A car accident attorney can help you better understand any factors you aren’t familiar with.

Fault in the Accident

A person may be at fault in, or cause, the accident, but that doesn’t always mean you can file a lawsuit against their insurance company. The person must also have been acting negligently at the time of the crash to be found at fault.

For example, if a person had faulty brakes and this resulted in an auto accident, they are at fault but didn’t act negligently.

Fault vs No-Fault States

In a fault state, accident victims file claims with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. This means that you would also sue that driver’s insurance company if they failed to pay your claim or acted in bad faith.

In a no-fault state, driver’s file claims with their own insurance company and would also file a lawsuit against their own provider if the company didn’t pay out or denied their claim.

However, in no-fault states, if your damages exceed that of your own personal injury protection (PIP) policy, you can still sue the at-fault driver’s insurance provider for coverage.

Liability for the Accident

It’s important to establish liability in accident cases to ensure you file a lawsuit with the right insurance company. A driver must be at fault for the accident to be found liable.

However, being at fault doesn’t automatically mean you are liable for an accident. Liability is closely related to the level of negligence present in an auto accident.

Level of Negligence

Negligence refers to a person’s failure to follow and adhere to the proper traffic laws that would prevent an accident. For example, texting and driving is considered negligent.

There are a few different types of negligence that govern personal injury lawsuits, including:

  • Pure comparative: Pure comparative negligence holds that you can only seek compensation based on your percentage of fault. If you are found 25% at fault for the accident, you can seek 75% of compensation for damages.
  • Modified comparative: This type of negligence states that you cannot seek compensation if your percentage of negligence is above the maximum for the state. If your state’s max negligence is 50% and you’re found 51% at fault, you won’t qualify.
  • Contributory: This type of negligence refers to a person’s activities that contributed to their own injuries in an accident. In places where contributory negligence is honored, someone may be unable to claim compensation if they showed even 1% of negligence.

Types of negligence affect lawsuits in that you can sue the company for not paying your claim but will only be compensated based on your level of negligence for the accident.

Insurance Coverage for the At-Fault Driver

While motorists are legally required to have full auto insurance coverage to drive in any state, some are still uninsured or underinsured.

This can affect a lawsuit in that an uninsured or underinsured driver doesn’t have the coverage that would make an insurance company culpable for damages.

As a result, you’d have to sue the underinsured or uninsured at-fault motorist in a civil lawsuit to seek compensation for losses.


How to Sue a Car Insurance Company after an Accident

There are several steps required when suing a car insurance company following an accident. Your personal injury attorney, or auto accident lawyer, can help you determine and understand these steps.

1. Have Your Case Evaluated by a Car Accident Attorney

An experienced attorney can review your case and give you a better idea of whether it has the potential to move forward and secure a settlement.

Because it’s not in their best interest to represent you if your case isn’t a strong one, most car accident attorneys will be truthful with you.

You can use the information gleaned from this case evaluation to determine whether you want to pursue the lawsuit.

2. File Your Initial Claim

Your personal injury lawyer will put together and file your initial insurance claim following your accident. This may include collecting evidence and reviewing information such as medical bills.

3. Undergo Discovery

The discovery process provides both parties the opportunity to share evidence to ensure there are no surprises. This is also a chance for parties to depose each others’ witnesses if necessary.

A thorough discovery process is crucial to a successful car insurance lawsuit.

4. Begin Car Accident Settlement Negotiations

Another step in the legal process following an auto accident is negotiations between both parties. Your attorney will handle all negotiations on your behalf and work to get you a fair settlement for your damages and losses.

In most cases, a claim will settle before it goes to court.

5. Take Your Claim to Court

If your claim does not settle during the negotiations process, you may choose to proceed with a lawsuit. It is crucial to hire an auto accident lawyer with trial experience in this instance.

This type of attorney can give you the best chance at winning your case and obtaining fair compensation.


Evidence You May Need to Sue a Car Insurance Company

There are several pieces of evidence that can support your case when suing a car insurance company.

Examples of evidence used in car insurance lawsuits include:

  • Medical records: Any documentation related to your injuries and the medical treatment you received as a result
  • Loss record: A written account of all losses as a result of the accident
  • Insurance documentation: Any claims filed and correspondence sent or received
  • Witness statements: Statements given by those who were present at the time of the accident
  • Police report: The report created by the police who arrived at the scene of the accident

How Does Car Insurance Coverage Affect Accident Lawsuits?

There are different types of car insurance coverage a motorist can carry. The type of coverage the liable driver has will affect the compensation you may receive from their insurance company.

Collision Coverage

This type of coverage is used to compensate the insurance carrier for losses or damages as a result of a collision. For example, if you have collision coverage with your insurance provider, they may compensate you for vehicle damages should you be in an accident.

Liability Coverage

This type of coverage is used to cover losses and damages incurred by other motorists should you be liable for an accident. For example, if you caused a collision and the other driver suffered injuries, your liability coverage may compensate that driver for medical expenses.

Comprehensive Coverage

This type of coverage provides compensation to motorists should they experience vehicle damage due to natural causes like storms.


How Long Do I Have to Sue an Auto Insurance Company?

A statute of limitations is the amount of time you have from the date of the accident to file a claim or sue an insurance company.

In most cases, the statute of limitations is two to three years from the incident date. However, this can vary from state to state.

Working with an experienced auto accident attorney can ensure you know the exact statute of limitations where you live.

Additionally, insurance companies may try to drag out your claim until the statute ends. An attorney can help stay on top of your claim or lawsuit to ensure this doesn’t happen.


Car Insurance Lawsuit Settlement Amounts

In 2020, the average settlement amount for bodily injury following an auto accident was $20,235. The average settlement amount for property damage as a result of a collision was $4,711.

Data from another source between 2015 and 2020 found that average car accident settlement amounts were around $24,000.

Various factors affect the settlement amount a person will receive, including the amount of lost wages, medical expenses, severity of injuries, and property damage.

Other factors include whether they were at fault or negligent, the other party’s amount of insurance coverage, and negligence laws in the state where they file the claim.


Types of Accidents That Qualify for Car Insurance Lawsuits

In most cases, any type of accident may qualify for an insurance lawsuit if damages were incurred and the company didn’t sufficiently compensate you.

Examples of types of accidents that may qualify include:


Types of Damages to Claim in Car Insurance Lawsuits

There are several types of damages you may claim when suing a car insurance company. Some of the most common include:

Medical Bills for Car Accident Injuries

You may incur various medical expenses due to injuries as a result of the accident. Common medical expenses include emergency room visits, hospital stays, diagnostic testing, and surgery.

Any bodily injury caused by an accident involving a negligent driver can be covered by insurance.

Common auto accident injuries include:

  • Head injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Fractures
  • Broken bones
  • Lacerations and abrasions
  • Wrongful death
  • Whiplash
  • Concussions

Loss of Earning Capacity

Some injuries may affect your ability to earn what you did prior to the accident. If you can no longer earn the same amount of wages due to auto accident injuries, you may be able to claim this in a lawsuit.

Loss of Wages

If you are unable to work for a period of time following the accident and lose wages as a result, you can claim lost wages in a lawsuit.

Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering refers to any negative effects on your life you experienced as a result of the accident and can be considered a damage. An example of pain and suffering is any psychological effects suffered as a result of the collision, like post-traumatic stress disorder.

Loss of Consortium

If you or a loved one experienced injuries that resulted in an inability to function as you once did, this may qualify as damages in a lawsuit.

Wrongful Death

If a loved one suffered a wrongful death in an accident, you can claim damages to compensate for their lost wages, funeral expenses, medical bills, and more.


Car Accident Lawsuit Statistics

The following are statistics related to car accident lawsuits in the United States:

Got compensation through a settlement

98% of accident victims

not a lawsuit

Settle an accident case and receive compensation

takes around 11 months

Personal injury civil lawsuit filings

increased by 97%

in 2020

Traffic accident deaths

$55 billion per year in damages

including medical expenses and lost wages

The overwhelming cause of personal injury in the United States is motor vehicle accidents. Collisions account for more than half of all personal injury lawsuit cases.


List of Common Car Insurance Companies in the United States

There are many car insurance companies in the United States, but millions of Americans are represented by a few of the largest auto insurance providers.

If you are wondering whether you can sue your insurance provider for underpaid or denied claims, find your insurance provider below:

  • State Farm
  • Geico
  • Progressive
  • Allstate
  • Nationwide
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Mercury
  • Auto Club
  • Kemper Auto
  • CSAA
  • Hartford
  • American Family Insurance
  • USAA
  • Travelers Insurance
  • Farmers


Find Help with a Car Accident Lawsuit Today

Car accident lawsuits can be overwhelming, especially when you’re recovering from physical and emotional damages from the collision.

Working with a personal injury attorney can help ease this burden and ensure you receive the maximum settlement possible.

Contact LegalFinders today to get connected with an experienced car accident law firm that can support you every step of the way. We’d be happy to provide you with a free case evaluation.


Our staff are standing by to help you find the perfect attorney for your case.

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Published: 18 August 2023


Investopedia. “What Is Bad Faith Insurance and How Companies Can Act.” Retrieved from:

United States Courts. “Federal Judicial Caseload Statistics 2020.” Retrieved from: