Uninsured Motorist Coverage is a must for anyone who drives a car in the United States. Without this coverage their vehicles and the personal property owned or financed by them become the property of the insurance company. The insured individual’s policy holder is held responsible for any damages, which are above the policy limit or beyond that which was paid by the policy holder during the policy period. Some states also require uninsured motorist coverage for drivers to legally drive.
Most states now require all drivers to have at-fault driver only coverage, which is designed to cover the costs of injuries, damages, and death to other drivers when an at-fault driver has no insurance or is inadequately insured. Liability insurance for passengers is required in all states and can be considered uninsured motorist coverage for the policy holder if the vehicle is driven without proper insurance. The term “underinsured” refers to coverage that does not include the uninsured driver’s personal items. It is usually combined with liability insurance for the car, driver, and the property. Some states require uninsured motorist coverage for drivers who own cars they do not currently drive and whose value is less than the amount of liability coverage on the car. At-fault driver coverage can also be purchased for cars with higher market values at times when the market value of the car is higher than its actual value.
Some states allow uninsured motorist coverage for financial losses that occur because of an insured party’s failure to pay for medical treatment or any other damages due to an accident, and for punitive damages. These can include punitive damages for accidents caused by negligence or reckless driving. If you re involved in an accident that occurred because your uninsured motorist coverage was not current, you may be eligible for financial assistance from the other party’s insurer or their agent. The other party’s insurance company may offer to pay all or part of your medical bills, provide you with punitive damages, and pay for your lost wages.
In most states, uninsured motorist coverage is optional on a person or business’ insurance policy. It must be purchased and accepted at the time of purchase, or within a specified amount of time after the policy has been issued. Liability insurance is required if you’re driving in a state that requires it, and it covers both personal injury claims and property damage claims. If you re in an accident caused by the actions of another, liability insurance will cover the other party’s damages. It is also important to note that uninsured motorist coverage does not cover the driver of another vehicle, nor does it cover the vehicles of the other party. It only covers the other driver in the event that he or she is found at fault for an accident.
If you are in an accident and without insurance you can be sued for: hospital expenses, medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, and in some states, death. Without bodily injury liability coverage limits, you could be sued for many times your current policy limits. For instance, in Florida, if you’re hit by an uninsured driver who has no insurance and no personal injury limits, your policy limits on personal injury liability will apply. However, if the accident isn’t your fault, you could still be sued for the other party’s damages even with no bodily injury liability coverage limits.
Some states, including Florida, do have laws requiring drivers to have uninsured motorist coverage in addition to bodily injury liability. Other states don’t have these laws at all. It is important to note that all states, excepting Alaska, have laws on their own for determining whether a motorist has uninsured motorist coverage.
You may be asked to purchase uninsured motorist coverage from the very start of your car insurance policy if you are purchasing coverage for the first time. New drivers can usually get coverage at a reduced rate if they buy liability insurance as well as collision insurance. In some cases, the insurance company won’t cover you at all if you do not have this kind of insurance.
It’s also very important to understand the deductible and the per-limit of the insurance policy. The deductible is the maximum amount of money that you’ll have to pay out of your own pocket before your insurance company kicks in to foot the rest of the bill. The higher your deductible is, the less money you’ll have to pay out of your own pocket before the insurance kicks in. The lower your limit on per-limit, the more money you’ll have to spend out of your own pocket before the insurance kicks in. These are important factors to remember when deciding how much to pay for uninsured motorist coverage.