Most Washingtonians are not fully aware of UM (Uninsured Motorist) or UIM (Underinsured Motorists) Insurance coverage, and how each could come into play if involved in a Washington State auto accident.
As the name itself suggests, it is your financial defense right when you are injured by a motorist who does not have the ability to pay for your injuries.
If facts are to be considered, it is reported that around 12.6% of American drivers are uninsured. Currently, 20 States (as well as Washington D.C.) require that drivers carry UM/UIM coverage. This blog focuses on the essentials of UM/UIM coverage, and how each one differs.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM) In Washington State
Under this type of coverage, you will be covered for your economic losses. The UM kicks in for your protection in Washington State when the accident involves any one of the following cases:
- Hit & run case — unidentified
- Uninsured motorist
It does not cover accidents that involve a stolen vehicle in Washington State.
A hit and run case does not give you the opportunity to obtain the driver’s insurance information. Similarly, in case of the uninsured motorist, it is very unlikely to get back at the uninsured motorist who did not have any insurance in the first place to collect his/her insurance details.
Your coverage for UM also depends upon the amount limit you purchased it at. In Washington State, minimum UM coverage is $25,000/$50,000 per person/per occurrence.
In most states, under UM, your coverage will include:
- Medical care expenses/bills
- Services for replacements such as baby-sitter, or cleaners as your injuries do not allow you to continue normal daily life chores
- Lost wages
Underinsured Motor Coverage
This type of coverage is applicable when you are injured by a motorist who does not have enough bodily injury coverage on his/her own policy. In such a scenario, you will be able to make claim for your injuries by filing a UIM claim with your own auto insurance company.
UM/UIM Coverage—are these expensive?
The answer to this can be tricky. At first, and for many, an insurance coverage is an economic strain. However, if you give it a second thought, the cost that you will incur out of your pocket will be ten times more than an investment in the insurance deal.
Many companies in the USA offer auto insurance, which in return makes the rates very competitive. A usual range is between 5-10% on the auto premium policy, which is only around $50 annually.
Which one is most suitable?
This is dependent on a number of different variables, but it’s worth nothing that UM/UIM coverage have minimum requirements in most states. The minimum amount of UM/UIM that can be purchased in Washington State is $25,000.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a Washington State automobile accident, and would like more information, feel free to contact our Washington State personal injury law firm today for a free consultation by calling our office at (253) 946-0577.