Just because you have car insurance doesn’t mean you don’t also need uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. The Insurance Research Council (IRC) estimates that about one out of seven drivers across the U.S. are uninsured. And the number of uninsured motorists (UM) or underinsured motorists (UIM) has grown. Even though Ohio requires drivers to carry insurance, you can’t be assured that every driver you pass on the road has coverage, or enough coverage.
Protection from injury
Motorists should generally hold UM or UIM coverage at a limit for bodily injury that matches your liability limit. That way, even if someone else hits your vehicle and they have low limits or no insurance, you’ll have coverage. In essence, your UM or UIM policy will respond to your injuries in the same way that your insurance would respond if you were responsible for someone else’s injuries. The policy coverage can extend to needs like medical expenses, disability expenses, pain and suffering and even a life benefit.
Uncovering UM coverage
What is an uninsured driver?
An uninsured driver may be an individual who is guilty of harming someone due to a hit-and-run accident, who can’t pay for a claim, was denied the claim by their insurance company, or who doesn’t hold insurance at all.
What is an underinsured driver?
An underinsured driver can fit into a few categories:
- He holds the minimum coverage as required by the law.
- He doesn’t have enough coverage to cover the cost of your injuries.
- He holds a payment limit that can’t cover the cost of the physical damage incurred.
The most common scenario is when a person has coverage within the state limit; however, even an individual with a higher limit can be underinsured, if the damage caused in the accident is severe.
If you hold uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, these policies will cover the damages and money owed to you. They are a cost-effective way to mitigate risk, and maintain your financial resources in the event of an accident with an irresponsible person.
If you have questions about this type of coverage, or you’d like a professional to review your insurance portfolio and assess your existing policy coverage, contact the insurance specialists at Spreng-Smith Agency. We serve consumers, businesses and nonprofits in North Central Ohio.
Tell us: If you already have coverage for uninsured and underinsured motorists, does it meet your existing needs?