As aninjury attorney, we help clients recover a financial award after being in a car accident. While we get involved after the fact, many of our clients ask us what type of insurance coverage they should have in order to protect themselves if they got into an accident again. The type of coverage that you have can be extremely important. Here's why.
According to the Insurance Research Council, around 14 percent of U.S. motorist are driving uninsured. This is an alarming statistic considering that if you get hit by an uninsured motorist you could have a difficult time recovering any financial damages. Many people are uninsured or underinsured because they cannot afford to pay the annual premiums. If hit by an individual in this situation, going to court could prove fruitless because even if you get a judgment they wouldn't have the money to pay you anything. This is why we recommend adding an uninsured motorist provision to your insurance policy.
By adding this provision, if you are hit by someone that is uninsured, your insurance carrier will be responsible for paying for your medical bills and for the damage to your vehicle. As aninjury attorney, we will then proceed with building a case for the amount of compensation that you should be entitled to due to your pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical expenses both now and into the future. From your perspective, as the injured party, the process of working with a lawyer and filing a claim is virtually the same. The difference in who pays the damages doesn't change the overall process, only who is responsible for paying. The key is to add the uninsured motorist coverage before you are in an accident so that you aren't stuck in a precarious position if you get into an accident with one.
When reviewing your auto insurance policy, you may also want to look at your coverage amounts. Your liability coverage, for example, puts limits on what the insurance company will pay if you cause an accident and harm is done to someone else. If the case goes to trial and a jury awards a damages amount that is higher than your coverage, you could be responsible for the difference. This makes it important to have as high of coverage as you can afford to pay. Additionally, your collision coverage is designed to pay for damages done to your car so make sure it is enough to pay for your car to be replaced. If you have a loan on it, you may also want to add gap coverage. This provision will help you if you owe more than your car is worth, and it is totaled. Without it, you could have no car and still owe the bank money.
As an injury attorney, we recommend speaking with multiple insurance agents so that you can compare quotes and get more information on what you need to include in order to have full coverage. Our main advice is to ensure that you always have an uninsured motorist provision so that your finances and your future is protected.