Understanding The Difference Between Uninsured And Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Florida Auto Insurance Basics
Florida is a no-fault insurance state and drivers are required to purchase automobile insurance that is known as PIP (personal injury protection benefits). If the policyholder is involved in an accident, PIP coverage provides for medical related costs and some other expenses associated with the victim’s recovery.
Florida state mandates the minimum amount of PIP coverage motorists must carry. The no-fault designation means that in the event of an accident, each party seeks redress from their own insurance policy. Accessing benefits is not dependent on determining which party was at-fault in the accident.
The minimum automobile insurance coverage requirements for Florida drivers are as follows:
– $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) benefits; and
– $10,000 in property damage liability (PDL) benefits.
Additional Coverage Options Available
It’s important for all motorists to understand the difference between uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance coverage when considering additional policies and what combination of car insurance is best suited to their needs.
Common Confusion About Benefits
There is common confusion about what kind of protection each of these policy categories, uninsured and underinsured, are meant to offer. Essentially, both categories of insurance are intended to protect a motorist after an automobile accident in the event that the at-fault party involved in the accident doesn’t have a substantial enough insurance policy of their own to provide for the damages suffered by the injured party.
Uninsured Driver Coverage
In Florida, policy coverage for uninsured drivers can be purchased as an additional line of protection for a general car insurance policy. This policy add-on is intended to provide coverage for the driver and all vehicle occupants if a disruption or accident occurs due to a negligent driver who lacks their own car insurance policy.
In other words, an uninsured motorist policy is meant to protect you if you become the unfortunate victim of an accident involving a driver with no insurance whatsoever. This type of policy also has provisions that can be accessed due to hit-and-run accidents and if the at-fault party is found to have been driving on a suspended license.
Underinsured Driver Coverage
If you are involved in an accident with a negligent driver who only has the base level of insurance required by state law, then underinsured coverage would be advantageous to have as part of your policy. This insurance will be activated once the negligent driver’s insurance coverage is exhausted and would prove valuable if you sustain almost any type of injury requiring a hospital stay or physical therapy.
Uninsured Drivers In Florida
According to the Florida Insurance Council, Florida holds the dubious distinction of ranking in the list of the top 5 states with the most uninsured drivers. Nearly 1 in 4 Florida motorists lack any accident coverage whatsoever. These are scary statistics that all drivers should be aware of.
Purchasing uninsured motorist coverage is one more way to help protect yourself on the road. Depending on your circumstances, you may also wish to purchase underinsured motorist coverage as well.
If you or a family member has been involved in a car accident, there is no time to waste. Accident investigations must begin immediately to prove fault. Please contact the Fort Lauderdale law offices of Boone & Davis by calling (954) 566-9919. We look forward to speaking with you.