Underinsured motorist coverage is a type of car insurance that applies when the policyholder is in an accident caused by a driver who doesn’t have sufficient liability insurance. If the policyholder’s expenses exceed the at-fault driver’s limits, underinsured motorist covers the remaining bills up to a certain amount.
How Underinsured Motorist Coverage Works
Say that you are involved in an accident that leaves you with $35,000 in vehicle damage. Typically, the at-fault driver’s property damage liability insurance would pay to repair your car. But if that driver’s liability insurance policy only covers $30,000 in property damage per accident, underinsured motorist coverage would pick up the rest. This would prevent you from having to either file a lawsuit against the driver or pay the remaining $5,000 yourself.
Underinsured motorist coverage is required in some states along with uninsured motorist insurance, which applies when the at-fault driver doesn’t have any liability insurance at all. But even if it’s not required, underinsured motorist coverage is still optional in most states. To learn more, check out WalletHub’s guide to uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
No, uninsured motorist coverage is not required in Virginia, since drivers are allowed to opt out of car insurance if they pay a $500 fee. If a driver chooses to get insurance, they must get $25,000 in uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person (up to $50,000 per accident), as well as $20,000 in … read full answeruninsured motorist property damage insurance per accident. Similar amounts of underinsured motorist coverage are also required if you choose to get auto insurance in Virginia.
Key Facts About Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Virginia
Minimum Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury: $25,000 per person (up to $50,000 per accident)
Minimum Uninsured Motorist Property Damage: $20,000 per accident
Minimum Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury: $25,000 per person (up to $50,000 per accident)
Minimum Underinsured Motorist Property Damage: $20,000 per accident
Uninsured Drivers on the Road: 10%
Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage helps pay for a car accident if the at-fault driver doesn’t have enough insurance. Normally, the at-fault driver’s liability insurance pays for any property damage or injuries they caused. But if the other driver doesn’t have enough coverage, it can be time-consuming and difficult to sue them for funds to cover any bills. That’s where uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance can help save drivers time and money.
Because Virginia allows drivers to go uninsured, it’s estimated that 10% of drivers in the state don’t have car insurance. This gives you a 1 in 10 chance that the other driver won’t have insurance if you get into an accident. Car accidents in Virginia can be extremely expensive, too. For example, fatal accidents in Virginia cost a total of $1.31 billion in 2018, the latest year with CDC data.
Yes, you need uninsured motorist coverage if you have health insurance and you live in one of the 22 states where uninsured motorist insurance is required. Even if uninsured motorist coverage is optional in your state, buying it is smart if your health insurance plan is limited or requires high out-of-pocket expenses.… read full answer
Uninsured motorist insurance comes in two forms: uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD) and uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI). Uninsured motorist property damage coverage will pay to repair or replace your car after an accident caused by an uninsured motorist. On the other hand, uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage pays for medical bills, lost wages, and funeral expenses due to a similar accident. Some policies even compensate for pain and suffering.
Uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage can overlap with health insurance, though it generally involves fewer direct costs for the policyholder. For example, unlike UMBI, health insurance may require co-pays, co-insurance, and a deductible. Additionally, health insurance policies are often limited to a certain network of providers, while UMBI will pay for care from a wider variety of sources.
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Might Be Worth It If:
You get your health insurance through an employer you plan on leaving soon or another unreliable source.
Your health insurance would leave you paying out-of-pocket for thousands of dollars in bills if you are hospitalized or left with a long-term condition.
Your family members and passengers do not have good health insurance policies, since UMBI also covers the policyholder’s passengers and family members.
You can stack your UMBI policies. This involves combining the coverage on multiple vehicles or policies in order to get higher limits if you are seriously injured.
Uninsured motorist coverage is an inexpensive policy option that usually only adds about 5% to your annual car insurance premium. On the other hand, the average UMBI claim payment was $32,227 in 2016, the most recent year with data. This is a hefty sum that you would have to pay partially out-of-pocket if you only had health insurance.
In other words, buying UMBI, even if your state doesn’t require it, can protect you from the financial consequences of serious injuries caused by an uninsured driver.
Yes, uninsured motorist insurance covers a hit and run in most states. In some states, including California and Illinois, however, drivers cannot use uninsured motorist property damage coverage to repair or replace their vehicle if the at-fault driver is unidentified. In these instances, drivers must file a claim with their … read full answercollision insurance, if they have it.
Laws on uninsured motorist insurance vary widely across the country. But most places allow drivers to use uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI) coverage if they are injured in an accident caused by an unidentified driver. Otherwise, drivers with personal injury protection or MedPay can file an injury claim with these policies.
Rules on using uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD) for hit and runs can be stricter in order to avoid fraudulent claims, and UMPD is not even available in certain states. In addition to the states that do not allow UMPD to be used for a hit and run, some other states require the at-fault driver to have made contact with your car, as opposed to simply running you off the road or causing you to crash. It’s also worth noting that Oregon and Washington have higher UMPD deductibles for hit and run claims compared with claims for damage caused by an identified driver. Indiana, on the other hand, waives your UMPD deductible if your car was hit while empty and legally parked.
If you have uninsured motorist coverage and are involved in a hit and run, it’s best to check with your insurer to determine if your state’s laws allow you to file a claim. If not, you should consider your other options based on the types of insurance coverage you carry.
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