Uninsured Motorist Coverage: What is UM Insurance?

shaking hands after accident

You’ve been in an accident, but it was not your fault. Usually, after making sure everyone is safe, you'd proceed to get the at-fault driver’s information and insurance card so that you can file a claim with his or her insurance company.

However, it's possible the driver who hit your car may not have a current auto insurance policy that is active or in force. This situation occurs more often than people realize.  According to the Insurance Research Council (IRC), one in eight drivers in the U.S. is uninsured.  Despite this fact, you can rest a little easier when you add uninsured motorist coverage to your policy.  

Difference between Uninsured Motorist Coverage and Underinsured Motorist Coverage?

Uninsured Motorist Insurance, sometimes abbreviated "UM", will help you pay for medical expenses, lost wages and other related expenses when you or your passengers are injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver.  

Underinsured Motorist Insurance, sometimes abbreviated "UIM", will help you pay for medical expenses, lost wages and other related expenses when you or your passengers are injured in an accident caused by a driver whose insurance policy liability limits are exhausted or "maxed out" before satisfying the damages owed to you.

What Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Usually Take Care of?

UM and UIM insurance each can be purchased with one or both of the following liability protections:

  1. Bodily injury (BI)- Coverage that helps pay for you and your passenger's medical expenses when an injury occurs due to an accident caused by another driver's negligence and he or she is found to be at fault.
  2. Property Damage (PD)- Coverage that helps pay for your vehicle and property damages when an accident is caused by another driver's negligence and he or she is found to be at fault.

Is it Mandatory to Buy Uninsured Motorist Coverage?

It depends on where you live. The following 22 states plus Washington DC require drivers to at least carry uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage: Connecticut, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Be sure to familiarize yourself with your state laws and regulations to determine whether uninsured motorist coverage is compulsory for you.

Do You Need Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage?

According to the Insurance Research Council, as many as 13% of motorists driving on roadways in the United States are uninsured. 

If one of these drivers causes an accident that you are involved in, it's always better to know that you are protected and have the right coverage to keep you out of harm's way financially.

At Infinity, we pride ourselves on providing the best possible Auto Insurance value for our clients.

Our friendly Infinity agents can provide you with additional information about Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists coverage as well as other insurance options. Call 1-800-INFINITY to get your free quote in minutes, or visit our website to receive your quote online.

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