This is a story that I have to share, even though it’s a sad one. It’s about someone now suffering because they didn’t understand their insurance coverage.
We recently were contacted by a man who was a victim in a bad car accident. This man had been told by his insurance company that he was covered for any accident. And, to an extent, that was true. However, he only had $25,000 in coverage.
Now, $25,000 might seem like a lot of money on an average day, right? If any of us suddenly got a $25,000 check in the mail we’d feel rich! But it didn’t come close to covering this man’s medical bills.
To make matters worse, the person who hit this victim only had $25,000 in coverage also. So, the maximum he could get was $50,000. Again, that’s a lot of money but it is nothing when you’re facing medical bills, lost work, physical therapy, a totaled car… truly, this man’s financial needs will exceed $200,000 and there is absolutely nothing we can do to get him any more than $50,000.
Having insurance coverage does not automatically mean “covered for anything.”
When we told the man this bad news, he kept saying, “But I’m covered! I’m covered!” He thought that simply having insurance meant that he was protected from financial ruin. He has learned the hard way what I want you to learn the easy way: Get as much insurance as you can afford!
Also, protect yourself with another layer of insurance by buying UIM or Underinsured Motorist Coverage. UIM covers you against other drivers who aren’t covered or who have low coverage.
Do me a favor. Get your insurance card out right now and look at it. Does it have a “U” or “UIM” on it? If not, call your insurance agent and say, “Do I have Underinsured Motorist Coverage?” If he or she says, “No,” tell them you need it. If they say, “Oh, your health insurance will cover those expenses. You don’t need UIM,” ignore their advice and demand UIM.
Health insurance is no substitute for UIM
Here’s why: health insurance doesn’t cover everything that UIM covers. Underinsured Motorist Insurance coverage includes:
- Lost wages
- Future medical expenses
- Any damage arising from the accident (with the exception of property damage)
- All economic and noneconomic loss, which includes pain and suffering
Here’s another recent case with a happy ending. It illustrates the value of UIM perfectly.
This man was driving south on Santa Fe Boulevard when a car hit him by making a left-hand turn across his lane. The driver of the other car only had $25,000 of coverage but our client had $250,000 in UIM which will kick in too. He should not face financial ruin due to someone else’s inadequate insurance.
Do you really want to trust other drivers to carry enough insurance to cover your medical bills if they hit you?
Health insurance and UIM insurance are completely different. To learn more about this topic, download my free books:
- Auto Accidents: A Little Book About the Big Things You Should Know
- Motorcycle Law: A Little Book About the Big Things You Should Know
If you have any questions about this article, don’t hesitate to call me: 303-388-5304.