What is Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UM)?

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UM is short for Uninsured Motorist Coverage or Underinsured Motorist Coverage.  This is an optional coverage available to you as an insured driver to protect you from uninsured or underinsured drivers who are declared to be at-fault in an accident.  Did you know that up to 25% of the drivers on the road in some states may be uninsured?  

There are two components to the coverage; the first is called UMBI or Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage.  This part of the coverage provides you with medical coverage for injuries sustained by you in the case an uninsured or underinsured motorist is determined to be at-fault in an accident. Your agent or broker is required to offer this optional coverage to you in most states.  Your insurance company will match UMBI coverage limits up to your regular BI limits.  

The second part of UM or Uninsured Motorist coverage is called UMPD or Uninsured Motorist Physical Damage. This part of the coverage provides you with repairs to your vehicle in the event that the person that is declared at fault in the accident does not have sufficient coverage to repair your vehicle.  It has a small deductible attached.  

How does the coverage work?

Here’s how the coverage would work in a real life scenario. You are driving home from work and another driver rear ends your vehicle.  Not only have they severely damaged your vehicle, but you were also injured in the accident and transported to the hospital.  You find out from the police that the person that hit your car had no insurance.  If you have Uninsured Motorist Coverage, you can file a claim with your insurance carrier and for a small deductible, usually $250, you will have some coverage to help with your medical bills and to get your vehicle repaired.  Without Uninsured Motorist coverage, you would have to personally sue the other driver for your medical bills and car repairs which could take years to recover and thousands of dollars in attorney fees.

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