Will an insurance company cover a drunk driving crash?

by William King Holland on Apr. 04, 2022

Accident & Injury Car Accident Accident & Injury  Personal Injury 

Summary: Insurance companies may try to deny coverage in drunk driving cases.

Motor vehicle liability insurance protects people affected by car crashes, but there are frequently limitations on the policies that people carry. Generally, someone hurt by another driver can only claim certain losses, and even those are subject to limits based on the policies involved.

In certain scenarios, an insurance company may be able to decline to cover someone’s injuries, lost wages or property damage losses because of the actions that the policyholder has taken. If you recently got hurt in a crash caused by a drunk driver in Missouri, will the other driver’s insurance company be able to reject your claim because of their intoxication?

Insurance companies will typically cover drunk driving crashes

Although certain insurance policies have clauses limiting coverage in the event that the policyholder breaks the law, such clauses usually do not apply to drunk driving scenarios. Given that drunk driving crashes remain a leading cause of roadway injuries and fatalities, many people could be left without necessary protection if insurance companies could just refuse to pay after a drunk driving wreck.

If the insurance company can prove that the driver intentionally caused the collision, they may be in a position to fight a claim for certain coverage, but even then, as an unrelated victim, you would likely still have claim rights.

The at-fault driver can expect their policy to pay for at least some of the damages they caused. However, the company may cancel their policy or move them to a high-risk pool with much higher policy costs.

There are other protections for you besides insurance

Even if the insurance policy of the other driver applies, it could leave you with tens of thousands of dollars in expenses. Many drivers don’t carry enough coverage to fully offset how much damage they could cause in a crash.

Drivers may need to look at their options for a personal injury lawsuit when a crash causes catastrophic injuries or leaves them unable to work for an extended amount of time. In addition to taking action against the other driver, there may be third parties with some liability as well, such as a restaurant that over-served as a drunk driver.

Taking action after a drunk driving crash requires that you first learn your rights under Missouri law.


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