Should I Waive Uninsured Motorist Insurance in Utah? If you have purchased or renewed your car insurance in Utah recently, you may have been shocked at the initial quote from the insurance company and wondered how you could lower your bills.
Many insurance agents will tell you that you can waive your uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance in order to save money. Many people will agree to waive the coverage, not realizing that the effects that it may have if you have a car accident in the future. What is Uninsured Motorist Insurance? Uninsured motorist (UM) insurance provides money when you are injured by a person who does not have any insurance. According to the Insurance Research Council, approximately 12.6% of drivers nationwide drive without insurance. If you are involved in a car accident with one of these drivers that has no insurance and you have waived your UM coverage, you will be completely responsible for most of the medical bills that you incur as a result of the crash. Additionally, under Utah law, if you are involved in a car crash with a hit-and-run driver, your UM policy will compensate you for your injuries and pain and suffering.
Similarly, if you are hit by a driver who stole a car, and the driver’s insurance refuses to cover the claim because of the theft, your UM policy will cover the damages you sustain in that accident. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you understand your rights if you have been involved in a crash with a stolen car or hit-and-run driver. What is Underinsured Motorist Insurance? The State of Utah requires drivers to carry a minimum liability policy of $25,000 per person and $65,000 per accident. If you are involved in a car crash with a driver that has too little insurance to cover all of your medical expenses and pain and suffering, you can ask your own car insurance company to compensate you from your Underinsured Motorist Policy (UIM).
For example, if you are hit by a driver with the $25,000 minimum, but you have a $100,000 UIM policy, you have at least $100,000 of insurance coverage, and may have up to $125,000 of coverage available to you. An experienced car crash lawyer can help you understand how much coverage you have between the other driver’s liability and your own UIM policy. What if I am a Safe Driver? Even safe drivers should carry more than minimum coverage, and should never waive uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage in Utah. Just because you are a safe driver doesn’t mean that you will not encounter unsafe drivers on the road. If you are injured by one of these unsafe drivers who doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance and you have waived UM or UIM coverage, you may be left holding the bag.
Have I Waived My Uninsured / Underinsured Insurance? Utah law requires that waivers of UM / UIM be obtained in writing. If you have been involved in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, and your insurance claims that you do not have a UM / UIM policy, an experienced personal injury lawyer will first ask that your insurance company produce proof that you have waived the coverage in writing. Sometimes the insurance is unable to produce this waiver. Utah law imposes strict requirements for your own car insurance company to deal fairly with you, and our lawyers can help you understand your rights. If you have been injured by an uninsured or underinsured driver, or if you don’t fully understand your Utah car insurance policy, contact one of our experienced car accident lawyers for a free consultation. The experienced personal injury lawyers at Hepworth & Associates can be reached at 801-872-2222.