The cost of injuries, property damage, and deaths caused by motor vehicle accidents in the US is about $474 billion. Unfortunately, not every victim gets immediate compensation, especially when the driver involved in the accident has zero to limited liability coverage.
In worst scenarios, some drivers may flee the accident scene even before the victim jots down their information. Either way, you’ll suffer losses that require indemnification for pain and suffering. You also want to protect your income in the event of total incapacitation.
Underinsured motorist coverage (UIM coverage) can cushion you financially in the event of accidents caused by irresponsible drivers. Here is a guide on how UIM coverage works.
Who Gets Compensated With UIM Coverage?
Underinsured motorist coverage works pretty much the same as uninsured motorist insurance. However, there is a slight difference. UIM coverage protects you if the driver involved has liability insurance at coverage with low limits to cover your expenses.
On the other hand, uninsured motorist insurance protects you if the driver at fault doesn’t have a liability insurance cover at all. Either coverage may not cater for serious injury expenses because they have low limits, typically less than $15,000.
Moreover, UIM policy gets divided amongst all injured parties if the car accident involves multiple victims.
What Does UIM Cover?
UIM coverage caters to the inadequate coverage gap. For instance, you make claims against the difference between your total insurance coverage and the irresponsible driver’s policy limit. If you sustain injuries whose costs are greater than the insurance cover, you’ll exhaust the policy.
However, the amount covered may be different if your UIM coverage is a “25/50” policy. In that case, consult your lawyer before making any claims. Read more info on why it’s important to notify your personal injury lawyer straight away.
Proving the Driver Has an Underinsured Policy
Proving a limited insurance policy is easier than proving no policy coverage at all. You only need to contact the liability insurance provider to confirm the driver’s policy limits.
The insurance company might also give you a copy of the settlement check to prove exhaustion of the limit. Working with an experienced personal injury attorney can expedite this process. The lawyer will go ahead to verify all the policy details even before compensation.
This gives the victim an upper edge when negotiating a settlement with the liability insurance company.
Using Your Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Your insurance company will go ahead to consider the UIM claim after the attorney proves the exhaustion of the driver’s policy cover. Like any other settlement case, the insurance companies will do a separate investigation to determine the extent of your losses.
This includes examining all the pieces of evidence supporting your pain and suffering damages. If this doesn’t work, your personal injury lawyer will file a UIM Arbitration. This will determine the final compensation amount or any viable resolution.
Talk to Your Personal Injury Lawyer First
Both uninsured motorist insurance and underinsured motorist insurance claims can be challenging. When dealing with UIM coverage claims, it makes sense to involve an attorney at the earliest stage.
Moreover, an experienced personal injury lawyer will play hardball until you get fair compensation. Find more information on how insurance liability claims work from other articles on this site.
Hemant Kumar is a project manager at Tridindia with more than nine years of commendable experience in writing about LMS, translation, and IT. His unmatched talent and passion for digital marketing gave him the opportunity to work as a multi-tasking project manager at TridIndia’s sister company, Link Building Corp. Today, he contributes to the world by imparting knowledge on SEO, link building and internet marketing etc., that helps business owners grow their online business.