What is Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage?
Uninsured motorist coverage, also known as underinsured motorist coverage, is an optional coverage that an insured can choose to have on their auto insurance policy. This coverage protects drivers who are involved in car crashes in two different aspects: no insurance and not enough insurance.
When an individual is involved in a car accident with another party who has no insurance, UM coverage will apply. Also, when an individual does not have enough insurance, UM Coverage on one’s auto insurance policy may be applicable.
What exactly does Uninsured Motorist (UM) do?
You understand the basics of UM coverage, but what exactly does the coverage compensate for? Mainly, UM coverage is designed to provide insured compensation when the other party lacks coverage. This compensation may be used to cover injuries that result in medical bills and/or property damage expenses. Additionally, this coverage will compensate for pain and suffering expenses, wrongful death, disability costs, and lost wages.
What this coverage does it will fill the gap between what your bills are and the lack of insurance due to the other party being underinsured or uninsured. Consider the following example of how UM works.
How is UM coverage illustrated in an example?
Imagine you are making a left turn, and out of nowhere, you are hit by a car that runs a red light and is speeding. Unfortunately, as a result, you are fatally injured in your leg.
After this, you pull over and speak with the person who hit you and learn that he does not have any insurance.
Luckily, you have chosen to elect for Uninsured Motorist Coverage on your auto insurance policy, with limits of $15,000/$30,000. After you call the police, give all your information, you go to the hospital.
The hospital bill to cover the expenses for your x-ray, broken leg and four weeks of physical therapy comes to $5,000. Since you are fortunate enough to have Uninsured Motorist Coverage, this will cover all these medical expenses, up to your limit of $15,000 for a single person.
What is the difference between Stacked and Non-Stacked coverage?
Non-Stacked UM coverage is generally less expensive than stacked UM coverage.
Non/unstacked insurance essentially treats each of the motor vehicle’s insurance coverage distinctly. This coverage will apply for the specific vehicle you are involved in an accident with, up to the amount you chose on your insurance policy.
Stacked UM coverage gives you more coverage, but costs more than non-stacked insurance. Stacked insurance allows you to combine coverage across vehicles. For example, if you have a $25,000 policy coverage for two vehicles, you could then combine the two-vehicle coverage limits for a total of $50,000.
Consult with an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
Our Offices have been helping car accident victims in Sebastian, Vero Beach, and Palm Bay for over 30 years. We understand the fundamentals and can assist you in any questions of choosing the most adequate auto insurance policy. Make sure to keep in mind the additional costs that UM coverage incurs when making a decision. As always, we want you to be protected and to know your legal rights.