UNINSURED/UNDERINSURED COVERAGE – RIDE PROTECTED!
With minimum liability insurance now required by law in virtually every state, there are two very important options you can add to your insurance policy for relatively low cost, especially considering the added protection they give motorcyclists.
Despite such mandatory insurance laws, many people drive without insurance or carry only bare minimum coverage, and motorcyclists would be strongly advised to purchase Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists protection. The following case histories illustrate how Uninsured and Underinsured coverage works. Results may differ from state to state, so you should contact your local AIM Team attorney if you find yourself in similar circumstances.
CASE #1: A motorcyclist was on his way home when a car entered the street, not only failing to yield the right-of-way, but crossing three lanes of traffic and causing the scooter to swerve onto the center divider and hit a stop sign. The rider was seriously injured. It was first thought that the bike had not made contact with the car, but upon close inspection it was discovered that the vehicles had collided
Since there had been physical contact in these reported hit and run accident, and the motorcyclists was not at fault, the rider would have been able to recover for his injuries and other damages if he’d had Uninsured Motorists coverage. He did not have this very important coverage and was unable to collect from his insurance provider.
CASE #2: A young lady was riding as a passenger on a friend’s motorcycle when they were rear-ended by an uninsured drunk driver who fled the accident scene, but was later apprehended. Both riders were injured and the motorcycle was severely damaged.
About two months after the accident, the two motorcyclists contacted A.I.M. to see what could be done to recover for hospital, doctor bills and lost earnings. The car driver had paid for repairs to the motorcycle but would not, or could not pay for all the other bills. The owner of the bike did not have any insurance and the victims wanted A.I.M to sue the car driver.
After finding out that the two were not married and that the motorcycle was owned by the male driver, the female passenger was asked if she had any other vehicles that were insured. It turned out that she had Uninsured Motorist coverage on her car and since she did not own the bike and was not married to the driver, her own car policy would cover all her medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.
An asset check on the drunk driver disclosed that unfortunately there wasn’t anything that could be recovered for the motorcycle operator, but the passenger with knowledge about her own insurance was able to go from no recovery to policy limits. A very good settlement!
According to the Insurance Research Council (IRC), around 1 in 8 drivers are uninsured, with some states having uninsured rates as high as 26%. These numbers are unsettling, especially considering that millions of car accidents happen every year. When a driver does not have insurance or have enough coverage, then the parties will be expected to pay out of pocket for their expenses.
As motorcycle riders, it is vital that you have more than basic insurance coverage to protect you during your time of need. You do not want to get stuck paying costly medical bills and enormous expenses when you are in an accident. We recommend that you double check your coverage today and talk to a motorcycle accident attorney from our team if you have questions. We are passionate about protecting riders and educating them about all the necessities of riding.
Understanding UM/UIM Coverage
Motorcycle riders should always consider Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage or Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage. You never know who will be on the other end of your motorcycle collision. It is always better to be prepared with the right coverage than to rely on someone else to have it. Learn more about what each coverage is below.
What underinsured/uninsured coverage can do for you:
- If the other driver does not have insurance coverage, then Uninsured Motorist coverage can kick in and cover many of the expenses in the accident, subject to the limits of the policy.
- If the other driver has basic insurance but not enough to cover your damages, then Underinsured Motorist coverage can pay for whatever expenses are not covered. This essentially covers the gap between the driver’s liability limits and your actual expenses.
Motorcycle accidents can be costly and the road to recovery long. Having the right motorist coverage can protect you when you need it most – and you’ll be glad you made this choice early on.