What is Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage? This coverage, often referred to as UIM/UM is a type of insurance that has to be offered with any liability policy you purchase. In Alabama, you must sign a disclaimer that you DO NOT want the coverage in order to not have it. Spoiler: You should ALWAYS have UM/UIM and NEVER sign it away.
Essentially, UM/UIM coverage exists for when you’re hit by another driver who either doesn’t have insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover your injuries they caused.
Let’s imagine a scenario where Driver A is at a red light, waiting on the light to change. Driver B is approaching the light behind Driver A, but Driver B is texting on the phone and rear-ends Driver A. Driver A is hurt badly and requires an overnight stay in the hospital. Driver A is eventually treated and released from the hospital and has $80,000 in medical bills (to prevent this from getting too carried away, we’ll pretend Driver A doesn’t have health insurance and has to pay out of pocket).
Let’s say Driver B did have liability insurance, but only the minimum amount required by law (25,000 in Alabama as of 2019). Driver B has no other assets or money and can’t help pay for Driver A’s medical bills. Well, Driver A shouldn’t have to pay all of those bills them self, should they? No! But Driver B is out of insurance and has no more assets to help pay for Driver A’s bills, so where does Driver A turn? Driver A turns to their UM/UIM policy. Let’s say Driver A, when they bought their insurance coverage, got $100,000.00 in UM/UIM. Suddenly, Driver A doesn’t have just $25,000 to go after, they also have an additional $100,000.00! So instead of Driver A having a massive hospital bill, they can get all their bills paid, plus some money for their pain and suffering, missed work, and other damages. (You’ll need an attorney for an insurance company to pay on any of those outside of medical bills, otherwise Insurance will leave you hanging.)
UM/UIM is an invaluable asset to have and protects drivers during the worst possible situations. UM/UIM is often not that expensive either and getting a $100,000.00 or more policy should only cost a few dollars a month extra. A few dollars a month extra to make sure you or a loved one is covered after a wreck is a smart investment, and one you should make.
If you’ve been injured in a car wreck and have questions about your insurance coverage, contact the Attorneys at Enzor & Maniscalco at 256-770-7232, or fill out our interactive form at http://www.enzormaniscalco.com/experienced-personal-injury-attorneys