I have seen the case time and time again where a client comes to me with
significant injuries from a car or motorcycle accident and they are not
adequately compensated for their injuries because they don't have
uninsured or under insured motorist coverage. The person that slammed
into my client in broad day light was not paying attention because they
were responding to a text message or answering a phone call. As a result,
my client ends up in the hospital with a leg fracture, or something worse,
and is out of work for several months and falls behind on all their bills.
Now they consult me, we find out that the responsible driver has a statutory
minimum policy and my client is out of work, behind on bills and facing
financial disaster. Does this situation sound like it's not all that
far fetched for you ? Well, it's not far fetched. It happens all the
time. This is why you should have uninsured and under insured insurance.
What is uninsured or under insured motorist coverage ? This is a option
that you can take on your own automobile insurance policy that is designed
to protect you in the event that you are injured in a car or motorcycle
accident and suffer money damages. If you have substantial policy limits,
like $100,000 or more and you are involved in an accident with someone
that only has $25,000 policy limits, you can make a claim against your
own insurance policy for the additional $ 75,000 that the responsible
driver does not have in coverage. This option with your own insurance
can save you from financial disaster if you are seriously injured in an
car or motorcycle accident and I would urge everyone to please ask their
insurance agent if they have this coverage and to make sure that you have
an amount that you believe will protect you.
How do you make a claim against your own insurance if you are hurt by some
else ? Well, when you consult me or one of the other attorneys in our
firm, we acquire the information for your insurance carrier and we place
your carrier on notice of a possible claim against them as early in the
case as possible. Sometimes we can find out the responsible driver's
coverage limits with a phone call and from there, we are able to place
our client's insurance carrier on notice. Sometimes we have to file
suit and obtain discovery from the defendant before you can place your
insurance carrier on notice. However, I and our attorneys always look
for this issue with an auto or motorcycle accident and we always make
every effort to maximize our client's recovery.
The last case I had where this issue came up involved a client who was
riding a motorcycle and was hit by a minivan that turned left in front
of her. The driver of the minivan was clearly at fault, and my client
was sent to the hospital via helicopter. My client had multiple fractures,
multiple surgeries, and she was out of work for several months. The defendant
in this case only had a $ 25,000 policy limit and my client was not even
able to recover all of her lost wages and out of pocket medical expense
because she only had $ 25,000 in uninsured or under insured motorist coverage.
This is exactly why I let everyone know that they should always check
their own policies and make sure that they have an appropriate amount
of uninsured or under insured motorist coverage.
If you find yourself thinking about these issues because you or someone
you know has been injured in a car accident, please feel free to give
me a call for a free consultation. The attorneys at Michael R. Varble
& Associates, P.C. have over 150 years of combined experience and
we will fight for you.