What is the difference between uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage?

When purchasing insurance your options can sometimes feel overwhelming and confusing. Generally speaking, if you’re involved in a car accident, and the other person is at fault, that person is responsible for paying your losses. Laws in the state of Texas require every motorist to carry car insurance when this happens. Many people, however, still do not carry insurance coverage. Your insurance adjuster should provide you the option to purchase underinsured and uninsured motorist insurance coverage.

Uninsured motorist, like the name suggests, is designed to protect individuals who have been involved in a car wreck where the person at fault does not have insurance. Underinsured motorist insurance coverage is designed to protect individuals who and have been involved in a car wreck and the insurance of the person at fault is insufficient to cover all the medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, incurred by the innocent party. From a practical standpoint, insurance adjusters use these terms almost synonymously.

In a recent study, about one in eight drivers do not have any insurance coverage. Even those that do have insurance coverage, often times only carry the minimum policy limits. These policies often are not high enough to cover all the medical expenses that a person needs to fully recover from his or her injuries that result from an auto accident.

The take-home message is straightforward. With underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage, you will be protected by your own insurance company even if the person that causes the accident does not have insurance to pay all the property damage and medical expenses caused by the accident.

Many times, the premiums for the additional insurance coverage is minimal and the peace of mind that can come from having this form of coverage is invaluable. It is important to take the time to understand your legal options when purchasing an auto insurance policy. If you have any questions, Dan Packard, a board-certified personal injury specialist, is an attorney here in San Antonio that can provide you honest sincere advice to help you better understand your legal rights and available options. For even more helpful information on handling a car wreck, click the button below to download our free car accident ebook.

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