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Uninsured Motorist Claims
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Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Insurance Coverage in Florida
It may be a good idea to purchase uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage if you live in Florida. Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured drivers with an estimated 19% of its drivers on the roads without liability coverage. Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Insurance Coverage also known as UM coverage is insurance that provides coverage when you are injured in an accident involving an automobile and the liable party is uninsured or underinsured. UM Coverage is not required in Florida, however, it may be a good idea given that Florida has a high number of drivers without liability coverage.
We routinely see car accident and injury cases where the at-fault party has little or no liability coverage. For example, we recently had a client who suffered multiple broken bones and lacerations as the result of a car accident. The at-fault party only had $10,000 in bodily injury coverage. Without UM coverage, our client would be limited to recover $10,000 for his injuries. Given that he had additional UM coverage, he was able to make a further recovery to help assist with his medical bills and recovery.
When shopping for auto insurance, your insurance company is required to offer you uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. Pursuant to section 627.727, Florida Statues, any insurer providing bodily injury liability coverage must make available UM/UIM insurance up to the amount of the bodily injury coverage. This means that your insurance company must offer you the option to purchase UM coverage. If you wish to decline the UM coverage or UIM coverage, the insurance company must provide you with form that you sign rejecting the uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
“Stacked” v. “Non-Stacked” coverage
Typically you will pay more for stacked coverage, however, it also provides more insurance should you become injured in an accident. If you have multiple cars on your insurance policy, stacking the coverage allows you to utilize the coverage for all three vehicles, in the event one vehicle is in an accident. For example, if you purchase $25,000 in UM coverage and you have three vehicles on your policy, you would have up to $75,000 in UM coverage available if you were involved in a car accident where that insurance coverage was needed. If your coverage is non-stacked, you would be limited to $25,000 in UM Coverage as the policy would limit you to the coverage specifically assigned to that car.