Underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage will come to your rescue if a driver without adequate coverage crashes into your car, while uninsured motorist (UM) coverage pays for your losses from drivers without any insurance coverage. The two forms of coverage ensure you don't incur any losses if you are injured in an accident caused by a motorist without adequate coverage.
The main question on many motorists minds is whether UIM/UM coverage is necessary or just another car expense that they can overlook. Well, here are some of the reasons why UIM/UM coverage makes perfect sense.
1. Legal Requirement
Auto insurance is regulated at the state level, and there are differences in coverage requirements in different states. For example, some states make UIM/UM coverage mandatory, while in other states the coverage is optional. If you want to drive, and UIM/UM coverage is mandatory in your state, then it's in your best interest to buy the coverage to meet the legal requirement.
Since it's illegal to drive without the required minimum coverage, you risk serious repercussions if the authorities find you driving without UIM/UM coverage. The authorities may suspend your driving license and order you to pay a monetary fine. Not only that, but your auto insurance rates may also hike the next time you buy or renew your coverage.
2. Low State Liability Limits
Even if UIM/UM coverage is not mandatory in your state, it still makes sense to carry UM coverage if your state's minimum coverage limits seem low. If your state has low coverage limits for motorists, it means many drivers have low insurance coverage since many people only buy the state required coverage.
Take the examples of states such as California, Delaware, and Louisiana that requires only $15,000 bodily injury liability per person. If a driver crashes into your car and sends you to the hospital where you rack up a $30,000 bill, the driver's insurance will only cover half of your bills. You won't have to worry about the rest of the bills if you have UM coverage.
3. High Risk of Accident
You should also buy UIM/UM coverage if you face a high risk of getting injured in an accident. Consider that almost 13 percent of drivers in the United States don't have insurance coverage. If you face a high risk of an accident, then your chances of getting in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver are also high.
You face a high risk of an accident if you live near a dangerous highway, commute via a dangerous road, have a long commute, or you generally drive a lot. An auto insurance agent can help you assess your risk of accident to determine whether you should buy UIM/UM coverage.
4. High Number of Uninsured Motorists
The percentage of uninsured motorists in the U.S. may be 13 percent, but in some states, the percentage is much higher than that. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), over 18 percent of drivers in states such as Florida, Alabama, and Tennessee were uninsured in the year 2015.
As a driver in such states, your risk of getting in an accident with an uninsured driver is much higher than getting in a collision with an uninsured driver in other states. As such, protect yourself and buy UIM/UM coverage.
5. Peace of Mind
Buy UIM/UM coverage to give yourself peace of mind knowing that your coverage is adequate whatever happens. One of the reasons people buy auto insurance is to reassure themselves that they won't incur monetary losses in case of an accident. Buying UIM/UM coverage will give you this reassurance.
As you can see, UIM/UM coverage is vital and will come to your rescue in a variety of circumstances. Koski & Co. Insurance Agents will help you if you are unsure whether to buy UIM/UM coverage or if you need guidance on the purchase. Contact us today for any question you have on auto insurance.