Making a Florida Uninsured Motorist Claim
For a number of years, Florida has ranked as the highest, or one of the highest, states for uninsured motorists. Part of the reason for this is that Florida is a no-fault insurance state. This means drivers are required to carry PIP (Personal Injury Protection) coverage and property damage liability, but there is no requirement to carry bodily injury liability coverage as with other states. However, many people don’t even carry the minimum PIP or PD coverage. For this reason, some drivers elect to carry uninsured (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage.
Some people, especially those new to Florida, cannot understand how a driver who causes an injury accident does not have to pay for the victim’s damage. This is where the importance of UM coverage is recognized, as you have the option to file a claim under your own policy.
How Does UM/UIM Coverage Work?
The function of UM coverage is much like bodily injury insurance coverage you find in other states. It will provide the policyholder with coverage for any damages caused by another driver who has no coverage and whose negligence caused the accident. UIM coverage will handle losses in the event the at-fault driver’s policy is not sufficient to pay for all the damages they caused.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist coverage can compensate a victim for damages like current and future medical expenses, current and future lost earnings, and general damages like pain and suffering.
Stacking UM Policies in Florida
Stacking is a term that means you can choose to combine UM coverage on each vehicle you own. This is a way to increase the potential payout on a claim if you have a serious injury auto accident and the at-fault driver has no coverage. Stacking can take place between policies or under a single policy.
For example, if you and your spouse each have your own policies. Each policy has $50,000 per person/$100,000 per accident. This means that when stacking, it could be up to $100,000 per person or $200,000 per accident. If you have a single policy with three vehicles on it, each with $25,000 per person or $50,000 then you could have $75,000 per person or $150,000 per accident.
Were You Offered UM/UIM Coverage?
There is a Florida statute that says insurance companies in the state are required to ask all potential policyholders to sign off on whether or not they want to purchase UM/UIM coverage. Failure to obtain these affidavits can result in the company having to provide UM/UIM coverage. This is where an Orlando auto accident attorney can help.
Contact an Orlando Auto Accident Attorney Today for Assistance
Unfortunately, accidents will happen. You cannot control what other drivers do, but you can protect yourself and ensure you are financially compensated in the event of a serious collision. If you have questions regarding filing a UM claim or need assistance pursuing a claim for damages, contact the Payer Law today to schedule an initial consultation.