Auto insurance is meant to protect drivers financially in case of an accident, especially when they are at fault. In all states, to operate a motor vehicle a driver is required to prove financial responsibility, usually in the form of insurance. However, just like most laws, there are many who do not comply. If a vehicle is hit by a driver with no insurance, it can leave the owner of the car left with damages that are not covered unless they have uninsured motorist insurance coverage.
What Uninsured Motorist Insurance Covers
In multiple vehicle accidents, the at-fault driver is generally responsible for paying all damages to the other party’s vehicle and any other expenses such as medical costs and lost wages. Each state has different laws on how this is determined. However, if the at-fault driver does not have insurance, there is a good chance they also do not have the financial means to pay for an accident. This is when having uninsured motorist coverage can be beneficial.
Uninsured motorist coverage is to protect drivers and their vehicles from financial expenses caused by yet not paid by another driver. If the responsible person is unable to pay for damages, a covered victim can file a claim to their own insurance company to cover fixing or replacing their vehicle, medical costs and other expenses. This coverage can also be used when someone is the victim of a hit-and-run accident when the at-fault driver cannot be identified or located. Having this type of extra coverage is generally affordable and worth the cost in case it is ever needed.
Under-insured Motorist Coverage When Damages Exceed The Value Of The At-Fault Driver’s Insurance Coverage
Another extension of uninsured motorist coverage is under-insured coverage. This insurance gives drivers additional financial coverage in case of a serious accident that causes a financially large toll. Although the person at-fault in an accident may have insurance, they may not have adequate coverage for an accident that involves an expensive vehicle or a serious injury. In Illinois as in many states, drivers are only required to have $20,000 minimum in liability insurance, which would barely cover most vehicles to be replaced, much less cover medical expenses.
Under-insured motorist coverage allows drivers protection in case the person who causes the accident is unable to pay for all the damages. A driver can file a claim through their own insurance to cover damages that are above what has been paid by the at-fault driver’s insurance. This gives piece of mind that a person is protected financially, even if the other driver is not able to fully pay the damages.
The fact is that regardless of how safe a driver a person is and whether they are financially responsible, there are many people sharing the roads that are not. Both uninsured and under-insured motorist coverage can protect these safe drivers in case of an accident that is not their fault, yet is unable to be paid for by the other party. The CDC estimates that auto accidents cost over $99 billion in the U.S. in 2010 and the National Safety Council estimates that a non-fatal disabling injury from an auto accident averages about $78,000. With numbers this high, every safe and responsible driver should have this additional coverage to protect themselves in case they are hit by a uninsured or under-insured driver.
Chicago Uninsured Motorist Accident Lawyers
Injuries sustained in a hit-and-run accident or with a driver who does not carry any liability insurance must be handled by attorneys who have experience handling these cases in order for you to secure maximum compensation for your case. Our uninsured motorist accident lawyers have significant experience with insurance claims so you do not need to worry about leaving money on the table. As with all of our car accident cases, we handle Chicago uninsured motorist accident cases on a contingency fee basis where there is never a fee charged without a recovery for you. Contact us today with your questions.
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