The Benefits Of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Although Florida’s no fault auto liability law requires all drivers to carry auto insurance to cover their losses in the event of an accident, an alarming number of motorists fail to obtain it. In fact, as many as 25 percent of drivers in Florida don’t carry the proper insurance coverage. This makes it particularly important for Florida drivers to take the added precautionary measure of purchasing uninsured/underinsured motorist policies. We’ve listed a few of the benefits of doing so below.
Mandatory PIP Coverage in Florida
In Florida, all drivers must carry at least $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and Property Damage Liability (PDL) insurance. The former will cover 80 percent of a policyholder’s accident-related medical bills (regardless of fault), while the latter should pay for any property damage that a policyholder causes to someone else’s vehicle. Unfortunately, this minimum coverage is often not enough to cover all of a victim’s losses, as even minor injuries can quickly exceed $10,000. Furthermore, many drivers don’t have insurance at all, which can leave motorists in a difficult position if they were not the cause of their crashes and they exceed the limits of their own policies. This is where uninsured/underinsured motorist policies kick in.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Florida doesn’t require drivers to obtain uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Most drivers are, however, encouraged to purchase this type of policy, which applies in situations where:
- An at-fault driver doesn’t have any PIP or PDL auto insurance;
- The at-fault driver only has minimum insurance coverage and it isn’t enough to cover the entirety of a victim’s accident-related losses; or
- The injured party was the victim of a hit and run accident and the at-fault driver was never identified.
In these cases, the policyholder’s insurer will step into the shoes of the at-fault driver’s insurance company, covering related costs, like out-of-pocket medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and disability. A driver who didn’t have one of these policies and who was involved in one of the scenarios we mentioned above, could end up struggling to pay medical bills and vehicle repair costs on their own, or trying to recover compensation directly from the at-fault party in court. Unfortunately, the latter can be time-consuming and expensive and in many cases, uninsured drivers don’t have the personal assets to pay a legal judgment, even if a court does rule in a claimant’s favor.
Were You Involved in a Florida Car Accident?
Because so many Florida drivers are unmotivated to carry additional coverage, it’s a good idea for motorists to consider purchasing extra insurance, like uninsured/underinsured policies. The dedicated Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyers at Boone & Davis are committed to helping our clients obtain the compensation they deserve, whether through settlement proceedings or litigation. Schedule your free consultation with a member of our legal team by calling 954-566-9919 today. You can also set up an appointment with our office by filling out an online contact form.