For every safe driver, there is another, less responsible uninsured motorist on the road. Whether they’re trying to get somewhere too quickly by running a red light, distracted by texting, or failing to signal, these are all reckless actions that can cause a serious accident.
How does Uninsured Motorist Cover protect safe drivers?
Sometimes the driver at-fault is underinsured and in the worst-case scenario, they take off before law enforcement can help exchange information. This leaves drivers with a totaled vehicle and very little recourse.
To minimize the cost of car accidents, there exists Uninsured Motorist Coverage. This Shaked Law Resource writeup will help explain what “UIM” is, why it’s important, and why all safe drivers should be covered by it.
When is Uninsured Motorist Coverage necessary?
To fully understand “uninsured motorist coverage”, let’s first look at in what situations one would use it:
- The driver at-fault is underinsured or completely uninsured
- Eliminates the necessity that the driver pay for an accident in which they’re not at-fault
- In states with higher rates of uninsured drivers such as Florida, coverage can often cost more
How does coverage work?
Next, we’ll investigate how UIM coverage works.
When a driver sustains injuries in a car accident, they must file a claim with the other driver’s insurance. The insurer pays for repairs, or if the car is a total loss, that may be covered depending on the policy. Medical expenses, and any financial losses resulting from an accident may also be covered per the policy guidelines.
However, there are some instances in which the driver at-fault does not have enough coverage. In some cases, as is common in South Florida, the driver may have no insurance at all. It’s estimated that about 1 in 8 drivers are completely uninsured. Without Uninsured Motorist Coverage, drivers end up paying completely out of pocket for everything. If the vehicle is totaled, the driver may have to pay out of pocket to replace it!
What’s the difference between Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage?
Like other forms of liability insurance, there are two different categories of motorist coverage that protects safe drivers from paying out of pocket after an accident:
- Uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage (also known as “UMBI”): this type of insurance can cover injury-related expenses ranging from lost wages to medical expenses if a driver requires transport to a hospital. This type of insurance protects drivers should the accident become a hit and run.
- Uninsured motorist property damage coverage (also known as “UMPD”): this type of insurance covers anything that happens to the car during an accident. This form of insurance does not cover any damage or injuries sustained in a hit and run accident.
Does Florida require UIM coverage?
Due to the high number of accidents in certain states, sometimes Uninsured Motorist Coverage is a requirement. Despite the fact very few Floridians have car insurance, however, it is not a requirement in our state.
Safe drivers know they need UIM, requirement or not. Having a UIM policy is important to safeguard against accidents that occur due to the recklessness or negligence of another driver. Often when a driver is rear ended while another driver is distracted, whiplash injuries that require medical attention occur. When this happens, the irresponsible driver may get away without providing their information, and that’s where Uninsured Motorist Coverage can save time and money.