Imagine that you are hit and injured by a driver who carries little or no insurance. Or worse, imagine that the driver who hit you speeds off after the accident. Your liability insurance only covers other people’s bodily injuries or death for which you are responsible. Since you did not cause the accident, your liability insurance will not provide you with any compensation. You are stuck with hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages. It can be difficult to know what to to do next.
This type of situation occurs frequently, and it is the reason you want to carry plenty of uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage in Toledo. If you want to know more about uninsured motorist coverage, speak with a skilled Toledo car accident attorney that can answer your questions.
Function of Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
These types of policies often abbreviated UM (uninsured motorist) and UIM (underinsured motorist), protect individuals who have been involved in an accident with an irresponsible driver who carries little or no auto insurance or if an individual is involved in an accident with a hit-and-run driver. Both UM and UIM coverage in Toledo, apply to the driver and any passengers in their car, and to the driver and others listed on their insurance policy (including family members) when in other cars.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Uninsured drivers come in several different forms. They might not have any insurance at all. They might have insurance that does not meet state-mandated minimum liability requirements. Their insurance company could deny their claim or not be able to pay it.
If an individual is hit by an uninsured driver and they do not have uninsured motorist protection, they will not receive any compensation from either their insurance provider or the other driver’s. An underinsured driver meets minimum legal financial responsibility requirements but does not have payment limits high enough to cover the damage they caused.
Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If someone is involved in an accident with an underinsured driver and they do not carry underinsured motorist coverage, they will only receive as much as their policy limits allow, even if that amount does not cover their medical bills, property damage, and other expenses.
Underinsured motorist protection pays an individual for damages that exceed the payment limits carried by the underinsured driver. It will pay up to the limits of their policy after subtracting the amount paid by the other driver’s insurance—in other words, the amount listed as their underinsured motorist coverage limit is the total amount paid by both insurance companies.
If the other driver’s insurance only pays a third of a person’s policy value, their insurance will kick in the other two-thirds, but no more. This is probably one of the most difficult auto insurance concepts to grasp. Without adequate uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage in Toledo, a person runs the risk of being significantly under-compensated if they are in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.
Contacting an Attorney
Ohio car accident lawyers have seen far too many cases where the victims of an accident do not receive the compensation they deserve because they did not have UM or UIM coverage.
Even though it is illegal to drive without insurance in the state of Ohio, there are regrettably many, many people who still do so. Carrying UM and UIM policies give you a guarantee that you will still receive the compensation you deserve in the event that you are involved in an accident with a driver who falls into the UM or UIM categories.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage in Toledo is not necessarily going to be automatically included in your policy, but any good insurance agent will strongly encourage you to add it on – and you should listen. Adding UM/UIM can often be done for a very low cost (less than $10 extra per month), and is definitely worth the extra investment to make sure you and your family are protected. Get in touch with a car accident attorney who can help.