A Tennessee woman was killed in a crash on I59 near Trussville according to the Birmingham News. The incident involved two vehicles. The other vehicle was driven by a woman from Gadsden. The News did not offer any other information regarding the collision.
This crash brought to mind some questions. What happens when someone from another state is involved in a collision in Alabama? Where does the claim have to be made? What state’s law controls? These are all questions which arise when out-of-state individuals are driving through Alabama and are involved in collisions.
How are these questions answered? Well, if the collision occurs in Alabama and the out-of-state individual is not at fault, the claim has to be brought against the Alabama resident in Alabama. However, if uninsured motorist coverage is involved, the out-of-state resident may bring a claim against her insurance carrier where she signed her insurance contract – typically her home state.
The law which governs the case will generally be determined based upon the type of claim. For example, if the claim is against the Alabama resident who caused the collision, Alabama tort law will govern. If the claim is against the insurance company for uninsured motorist coverage, the law where the contract was signed will generally govern. If the person from out-of-state caused the collision, the claim will be brought in Alabama, and Alabama law will probably govern.
Our firm has represented individuals from various states over the years including: Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Texas, North Carolina, New York, Ohio, etc. These were people traveling through Alabama to get somewhere else or simply visiting family and friends in Alabama. These things happen, and when they do, it helps to know ahead of time what to expect.