Uninsured Motorist Coverage - Explained
What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
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Back To: INSURANCE & RISK MANAGEMENT
What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
An Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage is an insurance policy that covers a driver without insurance when at fault in an accident. An uninsured motorist has no insurance or coverage whatsoever. If such an uninsured driver is at fault when an accident occurs, the uninsured motorist coverage covers the driver. This might entail that the insurance company pays for the damages if the driver is guilty of the accident. Underinsured coverage is a different insurance policy that should not be confused with an uninsured coverage. Underinsured coverage is meant for at-fault drivers who have insurance but is insufficient to pay damages and settle claims.
How Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Work?
Uninsured motorist coverage is a provision in an auto insurance policy, this means it is a coverage that supports an existing policy by adding a small amount to settle claims and damages. The uninsured motorist coverage is applicable to at-fault drivers who have no insurance or their insurance company not willing to pay for auto damages. In the United States, many drivers have no insurance. According to the Insurance Research Council, in 2015, an estimate of one out of eight drivers have no insurance. It is important to note that uninsured coverage is only effective when there is an accident where the driver who is at fault has no insurance.
Filing an Uninsured Motorist Coverage Claim
When an accident occurs and the other party knows he is not responsible for the accident and the at-fault driver has no insurance to pay for damages, an uninsured motorist coverage claim can be filed. Before the insurance provides any money for damages, an inspection is carried out to ascertain who is truly at fault. Victims of hit-and-run crash can also file an uninsured motorist coverage claim. Hit-and-run drivers are mostly uninsured. Individuals filing the claim must apply all the information connected to the accident. After the claim has been filed, investigation is carried out before the policy's coverage can be activated. However, in cases where there are no sufficient evidence, an uninsured motorist coverage claim can be denied.
General Auto Insurance Coverage
Generally, an auto insurance policy provides coverage for a policyholder as well as family members while driving the insured vehicle. A third party can also benefit from the coverage of the policy holder's vehicle is driven by the third party with their permission. Personal auto insurance is not the same as commercial auto insurance. Cars not used for personal purposes are not covered by personal auto insurance and vice versa. Auto insurance policies may include medical coverage for bodily injuries sustained while driving the insured car, property coverage and PIP coverage. Below is a breakdown;
- Body injuries or death of the policyholder or driver of an insured car is covered by bodily injury liability.
- Policyholders are reimbursed for damages on the car through property damage liability.
- PIP (Personal injury Protection) caters for medical expenses of passengers and other expenses.
- If the accident is caused by an uninsured driver, a policyholder receives reimbursement through the uninsured motorist coverage.
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