Probably the most important car insurance coverage to buy in Florida, is uninsured or under-insured insurance. Ironically, it is also the easiest portion of your insurance policy to waive or decline. Why, will be explained in a few paragraphs.
As a personal injury attorney, I cannot stress how many times I’ve asked a client to describe to me his or her car insurance coverage when I sign them up after an accident to hear the meaningless phrase, “I’ve got full coverage.”
Frankly, not many people do have full coverage since there are things you must have, things you should have and some things you don’t really need. If you’re driving the streets in a twelve year old car, do you really need to maintain the “collision” part of your insurance which may cost you more per year in insurance than your car is worth? Probably not.
However, if you have personal injuries from a car accident through no fault of your own, and the at-fault driver has no policy of car insurance, have you protected yourself by purchasing UM insurance?
You see, UM, or uninsured/underinsured insurance, is an insurance policy you purchase to protect yourself in case the person who hit your car and injured you hasn’t paid his insurance premium or has a minimum policy insufficient to cover your medical bills and your eventual disability (that’s the “underinsured” part of the phrase).
It is the easiest part of your insurance to waive because, frankly, some insurance companies don’t like to sell it to you. It is in UM claims for personal injuries that insurance companies take a big financial hit since so many people are driving around without valid insurance, especially in a long recession. Some insurance agents will even direct you to waive this coverage since, “Well, you have health insurance coverage anyway that will cover you for injuries.” And should you get in an accident, you’d likely end up seeking out a personal injury attorney.
But as a personal injury attorney, I can tell you that health insurance will not compensate you for time lost from work, from a disability suffered and for permanent pain and suffering.
While I never encourage clients to be “insurance poor” to protect themselves from people without car insurance, you should always have UM with limits that result in a premium you and your family can afford in case you suffer from a personal injury from a car crash.
Guard yourself from the vagaries of a recession: Whether in New Port Richey, Palm Harbor, Dunedin or Oldsmar, you should assume the driver ahead of you, beside you or behind you, are uninsured. Take this advice from a personal injury attorney: Protect yourself accordingly!