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Did you know that your own auto insurance provides benefits even if you are the victim in an accident and sometimes even if you weren’t in a car? You could be walking, riding a bike or riding your motorcycle and, if you are struck by a car, your auto insurance may help pay your bills.
I recently represented a woman who was walking home from her job. As she walked along the sidewalk, she crossed a driveway to a commercial building complex and she was hit by a truck. The driver of the truck didn’t see the woman and he dragged her 100 feet before coming to a stop!
In defending her and securing resources for her recovery, we were able to access funds from the truck driver’s insurance. That step seems obvious. But we were also able to use her own auto insurance to help cover her costs.
We accessed her Under-Insured Motorist (UIM) coverage as well as her medical payment coverage, helping to provide her with a lot more money to pay her medical bills. (By the way, this is just another example of why you need a personal injury attorney’s help if you are ever injured by another driver. You may never know all of the places you need to look for help with your bills!)
I represented a person who was riding his bicycle on Highway 285 (which I do not recommend but it is not illegal) and he was hit by a car. He was biking legally on the shoulder of the road when he was struck. We were able to use the defendant’s insurance, plus the victim’s UIM coverage to alleviate his medical bills.
I’ve heard too many stories about pedestrians who are struck by cars and they face awful injuries and overwhelming medical bills. And too many times, they don’t know enough to seek funds from their own insurance company. They think, “The other guy did this to me; he and his insurance company should pay.”
And while I’m on the subject, please go look at your insurance card right now and make sure you have UIM coverage. This coverage protects you if the other driver doesn’t have any insurance or not enough of it to pay for your injuries. Why is this coverage so important? Because one-third of all Colorado drivers don’t have car insurance and most drivers in Colorado only have the State minimum liability coverage of $25,000.
Imagine if you’re hit by another driver and their insurance company only pays you $25,000. I guarantee that your medical bills will far exceed that amount. That’s when your own UIM coverage kicks in.
Be an advocate for yourself! If you are ever the victim of another driver’s negligence, make sure to access all the coverage that you can from your own insurance company. There might be money sitting on the table just waiting for you to pick up.