Do i need uninsured motorist coverage?
There is a thought that everyone has to have insurance to operate a motor vehicle, but the sad truth is that there are people out there that don’t always follow the rules. According to the Insurance Research Council, approximately 1 in 8 drivers in the United States is driving with primary coverage. With urban sprawl on the rise and lowered fuel cost more people are on the road, and that could mean disaster for you as an insured if you happen to be involved in an incident with one of those breaking the law and driving without insurance.
SO HOW DOES UNINSURED MOTORIST COVERAGE WORK?
When considering Uninsured and Underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) you are looking at protecting yourself from damage caused by the other drivers. UM/UIM bodily injury insurance covers medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of income and funeral cost for you and all passengers in your car.
One benefit of an uninsured motorist is that it can cover you not only while in a vehicle but also as a pedestrian if struck by a motor vehicle where an uninsured motorist situation would apply.
SO WHY SHOULD I PURCHASE UNINSURED/UNDER-INSURED MOTORIST COVERAGE?
As previously mentioned you never know when you will be in an accident but do you want to chance to be in that accident when 1 in 8 drivers on the road are carrying no insurance? Not only do you have to consider that but what if the other party is only having the minimum required by law in their respective state and it is far less than what you carry? Uninsured coverage protects you for the “what if” much like your liability coverage protects you if you are at fault in an accident. Uninsured coverage gives you peace of mind as an insured for that “what if” when you cannot count on your fellow driver.
So let’s say for example you stop at a red light and are rear-ended by another vehicle. Your car’s bumper is damaged, and you have pain in your knee because it was driven into the dash. As the police are handling the accident, you find that the at-fault party’s insurance coverage lapse a month ago, meaning they are currently driving without insurance!
Fortunately for you have not only decided to maintain bodily injury and property damage limits higher than the state minimum, 250,000 per person and 500,000 per accident in bodily injury coverage and $100,000 in property damage, but you also choose to have the same Uninsured and Underinsured Bodily harm and property damage limits. Your uninsured motorist coverage (UM) will pay your x-ray bill of $2,000 as long as it falls within your limit. Also, you would be entitled to any loss of income you would sustain due to the injury.
Keep in mind that uninsured coverage also is some of the cheapest coverage you can buy an auto insurance policy, so had you been involved in that accident with no UM/UIM coverage you would be responsible for your medical bills which if your health insurance has a large co-insurance or deductible could be a significant burden on you and your family financially. As well you won’t have your auto insurance as an avenue to help you if you miss time from work due to your injuries.
Uninsured Motorist coverage shouldn’t be an afterthought in our society today so when asked if you wish to carry UM/UIM coverage don’t think yes or no think how much UM/UIM coverage should I consider. When considering what is best for you also consultant your local insurance agent at Rickard Insurance, located at 936 Market St, Suite 202, Fort Mill SC 29708