One of the most important coverage’s that you can purchase on your automobile insurance policy is that of underinsured – uninsured motorist coverage. UM/UIM coverage provides protection for you and your family in the event you get into an accident where you are injured and the driver who caused the accident has no insurance or not enough insurance.
The Dallas Morning News estimates that one in six drivers in Dallas County is uninsured. That number is surely higher in Harris County, Texas, and throughout the greater Houston area. The point is you have a very real chance of being in an accident with someone who has no current coverage or minimum policy limits. The odds of being in an accident with someone without insurance in Houston are high. However, most commercial vehicles carry plenty of coverage.
One tactic used by drivers is to purchase a month-to-month policy when they need proof of insurance such as for registration and or inspection, and then failed to make the payments, and the policy lapses.
Many car accidents occur with drivers who have a card indicating they have current insurance coverage, and the victims later find out the policy lapsed due to nonpayment. Others flee the scene of an accident for one reason or another and still more just admit they have no insurance coverage at the scene.
Unfortunately, if you are in an accident where someone does not have insurance coverage the 99% likelihood is that you will end up eating the loss unless you have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage on your own policy.
Although there are stiff penalties for driving a vehicle without valid insurance in Texas, the reality is that many people have to make a choice between putting food on the table and buying insurance. First-time offenders can be fined up to $350 plus costs of court and can also the Texas Transportation Code Chapter 708 authorize assessed additional fees.
So why do you need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage insurance?
H when you are the ways that buying such coverage can protect you:
- *UM/UIM can help when a driver who doesn’t have insurance coverage or does not have enough insurance coverage strikes you.
- * UM/UIM can help you if you are in a hit-and-run accident.
- * UM/UIM can help you if you are struck by a vehicle as a pedestrian.
- * UM/UIM can help you if you’re a passenger and another’s car and get seriously injured.
Often, there can be more than one underinsured/uninsured motorist policy that may provide coverage for an injured individual. Such as a situation where you are a passenger in another vehicle’s car and both you and your driver maintained uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage policies.
Underinsured/uninsured coverage can be stacked in Texas. This means that the policies can be added together for total benefits available.
You Must Be Offered UM Coverage in Texas
Your auto insurance company should offer you uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in the regular order of business. In fact, you will need to specifically reject such provisions in writing in order to not carry uninsured motorist coverage.
Nevertheless, we recommend that all drivers in the state of Texas carry uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage as the odds are fairly great that you will be in a car accident with someone who has either minimum coverage or no coverage at all.
If you wait – it can be too late! Speak with your insurance agent about UM/UIM coverage to protect your family before you are in an injury accident.
Have Questions About an Auto Accident?
Call Baumgartner Law Firm Accident & Injury Lawyers– (281) 587-1111.