Every automobile insurance policy issued in Florida which provides bodily injury liability coverage must also provide an equal amount of uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage, unless the insured properly rejects such coverage in writing or selects lesser coverage. If the insured is injured in an accident with an uninsured motorist and it turns out that an insurer failed to obtain an informed rejection, the insurance company must provide stacking UM/UIM coverage at that point, even if the injured had not been paying for it.
The UM/UIM coverage covers a variety of accidents involving a motor vehicle, as long as there has been a physical contact with the uninsured vehicle or a phantom vehicle caused another vehicle to wreck without actual contact (e.g., hit and run accidents, accidents caused by objects falling off of another vehicle, accidents caused by blown truck tires on highway, accidents caused when a vehicle is forced off the road to avoid a head-on collision, etc.).
The UM/UIM coverage may be stacking or non-stacking. Although non-staking UM costs at least 20% less than stacking UM, stacking UM provides 2 valuable benefits that non-stacking UM coverage does not. First, unlike non-stacking UM, stacking UM allows the insured to add the UM limits of two or more vehicles together for any one accident. Second, stacking UM covers the insured in any vehicle, whereas non-stacking UM provides coverage only for the vehicle on which the UM premium is paid.
Finally, the UM/UIM coverage covers not only the named insured, but also the named insured’s resident relatives when injured in the insured vehicle, someone else’s vehicle, or as a pedestrian. The UM/UIM coverage also covers permissive users or passengers in the insured vehicle, in addition to their own UM/UIM coverage.
The applicability of the UM/UIM insurance coverage varies by state laws and the insurance policy. At Anna Handy Law Firm, P.A. we can make a claim with an insurance carrier to provide you the UM/UIM insurance coverage. We can also investigate the availability of this insurance coverage for your claim if you do not have such coverage on your automobile policy, or do not own a motor vehicle. In some cases, we can file a lawsuit to determine the applicability of coverage to your claim. If you have been injured in an accident that was not your fault, please give us a call for a free non-obligation consultation. (386) 248-3000.