Your Auto Insurance Company Is Not Your Friend Even If You Buy UM Coverage
Author: Attorney Jason Macri
In the State of Florida, every driver is required to have auto insurance. The only requirement however, is that the driver purchases PIP (Personal Injury Protection). PIP will ensure that if a person has auto insurance and is injured in an accident involving a vehicle, they will receive at least $2,500.00 in medical payments coverage and could potentially receive up to $10,000.00 in coverage. That coverage does not extend, however, to other people injured in the accident if they have their own insurance. Instead, their own insurance will provide them with PIP coverage. Unfortunately, a driver in the State of Florida is not required to have any other type of coverage, including Bodily Injury coverage.
Bodily Injury coverage would insure that if a person is injured in an auto accident, due to the fault of another driver, they would be covered by that driver’s auto insurance policy. In a nutshell, there is no requirement in Florida that a driver purchase insurance to cover others. In layman’s terms it is “every man for him/herself.” If a person does not purchase coverage to protect themselves, they cannot expect that a person who injures them will have coverage to help with medical bills and injuries. This is where Uninsured/Underinsured motorist (UM) coverage comes into play. UM would insure that a person is covered for their medical bills, injuries, pain and suffering and lost wages even if they are injured by a person who has no auto insurance whatsoever. There is a catch however. Just because you have UM does not mean your insurance company will pay for your damages. Most likely you will need to hire an experienced injury lawyer to help you secure those benefits. This is because many insurance companies systematically deny UM claims in an effort to save money. Sometimes the only way to make them pay is to file a lawsuit.
The personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Dell & Schaefer have noticed that a vast majority of UM claims are initially denied by auto insurance companies. This is a perplexing issue for most people injured in an auto accident. The common person would think “well, I bought UM coverage, and I was injured by a person with no insurance, so of course my insurance company will help me.” This typically could not be further from the truth. Your auto insurance company is not your friend. Insurance is a multi-billion dollar industry. They don’t make this type of money by paying every claim that comes across their table. In fact, they only make money when they deny claims. They accept premiums up front and then deny claims when they are made. Just because you purchase a certain type of coverage from your insurance company does not mean they will provide it to you without a fight. Instead, much of the time it takes an experienced lawyer who knows how to properly make a UM claim to get you compensated.
The attorneys at the Law Office of Dell & Schaefer have made thousands of UM claims over the years and have filed hundreds of lawsuits against insurance companies based on UM claims. We fight hard on behalf of our clients to protect their rights. If you have been injured in an auto accident and have any questions whatsoever, don’t hesitate to call. Our lawyers are available to help you and we always provide free consultations.