What is Uninsured/Underinsured Auto Insurance Coverage?

What is Uninsured/Underinsured Auto Insurance Coverage?

About one in seven drivers across the United States is uninsured, according to the Insurance Research Council. That fact, combined with an Allstate analysis of 200 cities released last year that ranked Baltimore drivers last for safe driving, means that it’s quite likely that, at some point, a driver will be involved in a Baltimore car accident and insurance coverage will come into play, specifically uninsured and/or underinsured auto insurance coverage.

Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage applies in several situations. If the other driver is at fault or if the other driver is uninsured or if you are the victim of a hit-and-run accident, you can use your UM coverage. After the deductible has been satisfied, it pays damages such as medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost wages. Uninsured motorist coverage is also called uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI) insurance.

In the case of an auto accident, uninsured motorist coverage makes a payout that depends on whether one person is injured or multiple people have been injured, with a total payout limit per accident. So, typically, uninsured motorist coverage is written as “per person and per accident,” which is called a “split limit.” For example, a split limit might be $30,000 for bodily injury or death, per person; but $90,000 for total bodily injury or death, per accident.

Maryland law requires that drivers carry uninsured motorist limits of 30/60/15 or $30,000 per person, $60,000 per accident for bodily injury and $15,000 per person for property damage, according to the Maryland Automobile Insurance Fund. Of course, you can carry more and most people often do. Higher limits provide additional protection in the event of a Baltimore car accident and can provide underinsured coverage if you are involved in a motor vehicle accident with a driver who carries the minimum limits for auto insurance coverage.

Underinsured motorist coverage (UIM) is insurance coverage related to injuries received from a Baltimore car accident where the other driver is at fault and has coverage limits too low to cover the expenses resulting from the auto accident. In this instance, the other driver’s insurance company would pay the bills until the policy limit has been reached and your insurance company would pay the rest of the reimbursement up to the coverage limits. Although Maryland drivers are not required to carry underinsured motorist coverage, it’s a good idea to do so because many people in Baltimore can only afford to pay for the state required minimum auto insurance coverage amounts.

If you’ve been in an auto accident, you should talk to a Baltimore auto accident attorney. A Baltimore motor vehicle accident lawyer can make sure that you are fully compensated for the expenses you face when recovering from a car accident in Baltimore City, Baltimore County and the surrounding areas. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Thomas J. Maronick have experience handling Baltimore and Maryland auto accident cases. You can contact Thomas Maronick on his cellphone at 202.288.0167, the law office at 410.885.1775 or via our website for a free consultation.