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Why You Need Uninsured, Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If you are injured in an accident in which the other driver is at fault, that driver’s insurance should pay for your injuries – unless that driver has either no insurance or very low limits of coverage. If you are like most drivers, you carry uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage that kicks in to protect you in that situation.
Let’s start with a review of uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage:
So how likely are you to need uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage? More likely than you might think – especially in certain places. Unfortunately for those who like to spend time in the Sunshine State, one of those places is Florida.
- If the other driver is at fault and has no insurance, the uninsured driver coverage you carry applies to pay for your injuries. It does not cover damage caused to your vehicle. Unlike traditional health insurance, this coverage is first-dollar, with no deductibles or co-payments.
- Underinsured motorist coverage applies when the other driver has some insurance, but not enough to cover the injury expenses caused by the accident.
- In many states, including Illinois, you are required to carry at least the state minimum in uninsured/underinsured coverage. In Illinois, that is bodily injury coverage of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per occurrence. You can elect to carry the state minimum requirements for this coverage; however, we strongly suggest that you carry the same amount of coverage in uninsured/underinsured coverage as you do in your regular liability coverage. After all, why would you carry less protection for yourself than you carry for others?
- You also can include excess uninsured/underinsured coverage on your personal umbrella policy, to provide an additional level of protection.
According to the Insurance Research Council, about 12 percent of drivers nationwide are uninsured. But in Florida, that rises to 23.8 percent, or almost one in four drivers. Florida has the second-highest percentage of uninsured drivers in the country, behind only Oklahoma, with 25.9 percent.
In addition, Florida has the lowest minimum coverage requirements in the country. That means that even if a driver has insurance, it might not be enough to cover costs related to injuries in an accident that driver causes. In both of these cases, you would need the protection of uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.
We at The Bensman Group would be happy to talk to you about your auto insurance coverage or any other of your insurance needs. You can contact us at 847-572-0820 or firstname.lastname@example.org.