What is Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage? This type of coverage is commonly referred to as UM coverage. It is an optional coverage that a person can purchase on their own auto insurance policy. This coverage normally equals the amount of Bodily Injury/Liability coverage on your policy, but it can be for a different amount.
If you are involved in a motor vehicle wreck and the at fault driver does NOT have bodily injury or liability coverage to cover your injuries and pain and suffering, then you can file a claim with your own insurance company if you have UM coverage. This also applies if the at fault driver does not have sufficient coverage.
For example, I had a client who suffered severe injuries in a car wreck. The other driver only had $50,000.00 in bodily injury/liability coverage. Fortunately, my client had purchased $100,000.00 in UM coverage on his policy and I was able to collect a total of $150,000.00 for my client.
Unfortunately, many people do not know about UM coverage because their agent does not advise them or their agent does not properly explain the benefits of UM coverage. So many clients have come into my office and told me that they purchased "full coverage" for their car insurance. However, there is no legal definition to "full coverage" in Florida.
I have turned away many cases because the at fault driver does not carry liability insurance and the client did not purchase UM coverage. Due to the poor economy, this happens frequently; though, it happened too much even during good economic times.
I recently settled a case for $50,000.00, which was the policy limits of the at fault driver. My client suffered a severe neck injury and had to have surgery on his neck fusing it together. His claim was worth much more than $150,000, but he did not have UM coverage on his car. Therefore, the settlement was limited to the $50,000.00 policy of the at fault driver.
I recommend that everyone should purchase as much UM coverage as they can possibly afford in their budget. If you have any questions, feel free to email or call me. There is no fee and no obligation for our initial conference.