When you purchase auto insurance, Florida law requires that the insurance agent have you select, in writing, whether or not you want to purchase UM/UIM coverage. You will be asked to sign a form similar to the attached. People usually have no clue as to what they’re signing what they are giving up if they select the box that I hereby reject UM/UIM coverage. This coverage is extremely important to have. In Florida, a vehicle can be registered with PIP and property damage liability insurance only. There is no requirement that bodily injury liability coverage be purchased. And on top of that, there is a high number of drivers which are flat out completely uninsured.
UM/UIM coverage steps into the shoes of every driver in the state of Florida. If you are struck by an uninsured or underinsured motorist, your UM/UIM coverage will step in and compensate you for the injuries caused by the at fault driver. Your UM/UIM policy will protect you against drivers who are completely uninsured and drivers who do not carry enough bodily injury coverage to compensate you for your injuries.
I have handled cases where the other driver was completely uninsured and my client had a great UM/UIM policy and was able to be fully compensated for injuries. I have also handled cases where the at fault driver had minimal bodily injury coverage of $10,000 yet my client had a $100,000 UM/UIM policy and thus was able to be fully compensated. I have also handled horrible cases where my client ended up with $300,000 in medical bills and the at fault party only had a $10,000 liability policy and no UM/UIM policy. My client would not be compensated at all and would end up owing thousands of dollars in bills.
My advice is spend the money and purchase stacked UM/UIM. When you have multiple cars, your stacked UM/UIM coverage is multiplied by the number of cars that you have on your policy.
If you have any questions about automobile insurance, I give free evaluations. Please feel free to call my office and when you come in, bring your policy declarations page so I can see what you have purchased.
Picture Credit: 123rf.com