Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage (“Uninsured Motorist Coverage”) is a somewhat self-explanatory aspect of a car insurance policy. It assists an individual in paying for their medical bills when they are hit by a driver who does not have car insurance. The purpose of this coverage is to allow the insured party to have an identical financial recovery that they would have received from the negligent driver had the negligent motorist maintained insurance. In simple terms, Uninsured Motorist Coverage protects you from other uninsured drivers.
A question that arises with Uninsured Motorist (“UM”) Coverage is what if the person who caused the accident, the negligent party, has insurance but the total damages of the injured party exceed the negligent party’s policy limits? Here, the negligent party is a “underinsured” driver and the Florida state statute provides for this situation. The statute says that when the negligent party “has provided limits of bodily injury liability” that “are less than the total damages sustained by the person legally entitled to recover damages,” then the injured party’s UM Coverage kicks in. Basically, if the negligent party’s insurance cannot cover your injuries from the car accident fully, then your UM Coverage will.
All insurance providers provide uninsured motorist coverage but drivers in Florida are not required to have Uninsured Motorist Coverage. While the decision to have UM Coverage is yours, know the bills resulting from an accident can be costly. The monthly price of UM coverage is insignificant relative to these massive bills. Per the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, the average auto liability claim for bodily injury was $15,443. Pairing these facts with the statistic that over 400,000 car crashes happened in Florida in 2018, and then the small amount that UM coverage cost sounds somewhat more reasonable.