Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Attorney Blog

car accidentCheck Your Auto Coverage… You Probably Do Not Have Enough

Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage

A common situation that occurs in my practice is where a client is injured in a car accident and the other driver either a) does not have any car insurance or b) does not have enough insurance. The significance of uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage can be catastrophic. Imagine the scenario where you face a Mt. Everest amount of medical bills, are unable to work for several months, not even taking into account your pain and suffering and inability to enjoy the normal activities and hobbies because of your injury. Fortunately, all is not lost under such a scenario, albeit with one very important caveat. 

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is one of the most misunderstood and most underutilized coverages.  Uninsured coverage covers you when the other driver has no insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage fills the gap where the other driver had coverage, but not enough to compensate you for your injuries. You should never waive underinsured motorist coverage and simply choose a liability only policy.  But simply having underinsured coverage is not enough. You need to have the right amount of coverage. 

The minimum amount of coverage to allow you to legally drive in Illinois is $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident. Your underinsured coverage should not be the minimum since it is offset by whatever you receive from the at-fault driver’s insurance. Put another way, if you receive $25,000 or more from the at-fault driver’s insurance and only have coverage of $25,000 yourself, you cannotproceed with an underinsured motorist claim. Your insurance must exceed the coverage of the liable driver. From there, the policy limits go to $50,000/$100,000, $250,000/$500,000, $500,000/$1,000,000. How much should you get? As much as you can afford. The difference in price between a $25,000/$50,000 policy and a $500,000/$1,000,000 policy is not usually very significant. More importantly, it protects you from that situation discussed above. Imagine you have $200,000 in medical bills, significant lost wages, and you were just hit by someone with $25,000 in coverage or, worse yet, none at all. 

Another common question asked is whether accessing the uninsured/underinsured coverage will raise a client’s rates. The answer is it should not. However, insurance companies routinely find ways to raise insurance rates. Like death and taxes, insurance rates can be counted on to typically increase. However, if you pay to have the coverage and never use it, you have just given a substantial windfall to your insurance company. 

The hope is that you will never be in a situation where uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage is necessary. But all hopes aside, you cannot take the risk of someone seriously injuring you and not being able to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and all of the pain you suffer as a result of their negligence. Talk to your insurance agent and see how much coverage you can afford. If you are with an insurance company that does not offer more than the minimum coverage, consider switching. These companies are the bottom of the barrel. Finally, if you have any questions about uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage or about a car accident in general, make sure to speak with a car accident attorney. Please contact us today with questions or concerns.

 

Categories:

DJ did a fantastic job on my auto-accident claim!

I highly recommend Mr. Dexter Evans, and the Woodruff law firm. DJ did a fantastic job on my auto-accident claim. I really appreciated all the detailed information provided, and finding medical assistance for me. It was awesome. All my questions were addressed properly and asap. I made my final decision with confidence. Over all the […]

Lilia G.

I’ve had to know a few attorneys in my life and Jon was the best.

Unfortunately, I got badly injured at an athletic job. Run by a company that didn’t care about me. I needed an attorney and Woodruff, Johnson and Evans was recommended to me by a family member. That small gesture ended up being the best legal advice I ever received. Jon Walker defended me and made sure […]

Marko P.

I wouldn’t have gotten the relief from my injury if Jay had not gotten involved.

I was referred to Woodruff, Johnson & Evans by a friend after a work related car accident. The workmen comp adjuster was giving me the run around. I was having terrible back pain but because it was work related my doctors could not provide me the treatment I need. Jay Johnson began investigating my case […]

Randel M

Outstanding job for my mother and me.

Very professional. Was referred to me by my mother. Did an outstanding job for my mother and me. Great service!

Valente G

Russ was the best!

Russ was the best! I got his number from my cousin. Best phone call I ever made! Always there for anything I needed and got all my bills paid and some compensation for me! Highly recommend.

Timothy F

Thank you for a good service!!

Steve Sandler presented himself professionally with good rapport and showed concern for my well being. I will definitely recommend him to others!! Thank you!!

Sherifat O

This man knows what he is doing.

I can’t say enough about Jon Walker. He took my case after being denied. Told me everything I had to do and kept me calm during the wait and got me approved! If you want a professional lawyer who knows how to get you approved call WOODRUFF JOHNSON & EVANS I cannot thank you enough […]

Steve G

Far beyond what I expected!

Russ Haugen helped me far beyond what I expected. He was polite and communicated with me every step of the way. Thank you for everything!

Mikahl S

I really felt like I had an ally!

Jon Walker represented me in a Work Comp case. I really felt like I had an ally and someone who was going to protect me and my rights after I was injured at work. Jon was extremely attentive and available to me when I had questions or needed advice throughout the entire process. Also, Jon […]

Juli T

Recommendation to Blessing

I had a lawyer working on my insurance claim that was extremely unprofessional and after 8 months of getting nowhere, I fired him. Dexter Evans was recommended to me by a family member. He was extremely professional and made the insurance claim very easy for me. He was very informative and always got back to […]

Brooke D
View All Testimonials

Get Your Free Consultation