This is perhaps the most overlooked area of law by both individuals and attorneys alike. Uninsured/Underinsured (called “UM/UIM”) motorist coverage is there to protect you in the event you are injured by someone who does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to compensate you for your auto accident injuries. UM/UIM coverage is automatically applied to nearly every auto insurance policy, unless you specifically reject or waive that coverage.
UM/UIM coverage works like this: Victim is rear-ended by Defendant. Defendant causes $100,000 in injuries to Victim. Defendant only has $15,000 in insurance coverage. However, Victim’s own insurance policy contains $100,000 of UM/UIM coverage. Therefore, Victim is covered up to a total of $100,000. Victim can claim the $15,000 from Defendant’s insurance and the remaining $85,000 from Victim’s insurance, giving Victim a total award of $100,000.
UM/UIM can have a very broad application. It can cover you when you are on a bicycle or as a pedestrian, and for many other types of accidents where you are hit by a motor vehicle. It can also cover your relatives who live with you.
As you can see, UM/UIM coverage can be complicated. An accident injury attorney can offer critical advice in explaining the rights you are entitled to under your own insurance policy. If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident and the defendant does not have enough insurance or has no insurance at all, do not hesitate to seek legal counsel experienced in UM/UIM cases in order to best protect your interests. You may be entitled to recover damages that include medical costs, property loss, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact our attorneys at 949-409-4299.