I recently read a blog post by a Dallas Texas car accident lawyer, Sharita Blacknall, which explains in detail why drivers in Texas need uninsured and underinsured motorist car insurance. You can read Ms. Sharita's post here. In the article Sharita answers the questions, why should you buy uninsured motorist insurance if the other drivers on the roadway are supposed to have insurance to cover them if they cause an accident? Sharita's answer is blunt, to the point, and right on:
Because people do not do what they are supposed to do and you do not want to get stuck trying to pay for damages out of pocket.
Leesburg, Florida drivers can learn a lot from this post. The reason to purchase uninsured motorist coverage in Florida is even greater than in Texas because Florida doesn't require mandatory bodily injury insurance coverage. Remember, bodily injury coverage is insurance that will pay for injuries that you may cause another person if you are responsible for an accident. According to Sharita, in Texas a lot of drivers don't have insurance because they don't do what they're supposed to do – In Florida there is no requirement so what do you think Florida drivers will do?
Imagine the scenario, you're minding your own business stopped at the traffic light on US 27 and SR 44 and you're rear-ended by someone who is texting. Because of the accident, you're hurt and rack up thousands of dollars in medical expenses. You make a claim against the other driver and you learn they have no insurance to pay for your injuries. If you have uninsured motorist insurance, you have protected yourself and will be able to make a claim for injuries.
Here are some facts you need to know about uninsured motorist coverage in Central Florida.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage (“UM”) is the same. Florida policies define and “uninsured motor vehicle” as a vehicle with no bodily injury insurance or a vehicle who has bodily injury coverage but not enough coverage to pay for the injuries that you are legal entitled to receive. As an example, if your car accident claim is worth $25,000 and the other driver only has $10,000 in coverage, you will be able to collect $15,000 from your uninsured motorist coverage.
- These claims are contractual and based on the language of the policy.
- Florida insurance companies are required to offer you uninsured motorist coverage to limit of your bodily injury insurance. Any waiver of the coverage or reduction in the amount must be in writing by you.
- You are able to stack your uninsured motorist coverage. An example of stacked coverage is that you own three cars and purchase $25,000 in UM coverage; you now have $75,000 in UM coverage.
- Your UM coverage will follow you if you are injured in another vehicle. For instance, if you are a passenger in your neighbor's vehicle and you are injured in an accident, you can have a UM claim.
- Your insurance company cannot hold the fact that you make a UM claim against you by raising premiums. The nature of a UM claim is that you are not at-fault for the accident, so you cannot be rated.
UM coverage is complicated, which is one of the reasons that you should at least consult with a Central Florida car accident lawyer immediately after an accident. You do not necessarily have to hire the lawyer, but he/she can give you advice about where to go and what to do to receive the compensation that you deserve.
If you have any questions about a Leesburg, Florida car accident, call (352) 267-9168.
Photo Attribution: Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net