Purchasing auto insurance is one of those activities that most consumers don’t put much thought into. They know they have buy auto insurance because the law requires it.
Most consumers either call their family insurance agent, or the insurance company with the most clever TV commercial. But not putting much thought into your car insurance purchase could have dire consequences if you are injured in an auto accident.
Typically, consumers buying car insurance tell their insurance agent they want “full coverage.” Their policies will be written so that they are protected should they be at fault for an accident.
However, we frequently see problems when consumers do not request additional coverage in case they are injured in an auto accident by a person who is not insured (uninsured) or does not have adequate insurance (underinsured). Unfortunately, during an economic downturn, this problem is even more pronounced, with more people driving around with little or no insurance coverage.
Uninsured (UM) coverage will protect you if you are injured by someone who does not have insurance; Underinsured (UIM) coverage will protect you if you are injured by someone who does not have enough liability insurance to adequately compensate you for the injuries they caused you in an auto accident.
Your policy should include coverage for UM, UIM, and Medical Payments (Med Pay). The policy limits for UM/UIM will depend on the coverage you selected on your policy. We recommend that you carry as much coverage as you can reasonably afford, but if at all possible, you should request policy limits of no less than $100,000/$300,000. If you can afford higher limits, by all means you should increase these limits. Med Pay should be at minimum $5,000.
We urge you to review the Declarations Page of your auto insurance policy for UM, UIM and Med Pay coverage. Make an appointment with your insurance agent to add coverage in these three areas if they are not included in your policy.
This information is provided by the Hollingsworth Kelly to help you select the right coverage for your auto insurance needs. All too often, we see people who are injured by someone who does not have adequate insurance coverage. All insurance decisions should be discussed with your auto insurance agent so that you can make an informed decision to best suit your needs. This information is not intended to serve as legal advice.