Unemployment rates in the United States have had an impact on the amount of uninsured drivers on the road. Being hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver can be costly if their insurance policy cannot cover your bodily injuries, losses, or medical expenses. If you are ever involved in a car crash, it is necessary to have enough coverage.
The economy in the United States continues to worsen. It is only getting worse and we cannot help but worry about what may come next. It could perhaps be a car that has lost control coming into your lane.
How Unemployment Has Affected Drivers
One can only hope to be a great driver, but there is no way to prevent a car crash. A car crash caused by another person cannot sometimes not be stopped. Nonetheless, you can protect yourself regardless of being hit by an underinsured or uninsured motorist. As the economy has worsened, this has resulted in more uninsured cars driving on the road. In 2003, the Insurance Research Council reported there were 14.9% uninsured cars. Then, when the economy began to improve the percentage went down to 13.8%. Now, once again the economy has begun dropping and thus the amount of uninsured cars has gone up. There is a correlation between the unemployment rate and uninsured motorist rate. A 3/4% increase in uninsured motorists for each 1% increase of the unemployment rate. It was expected that by 2010, at least 16.1% of every car will be uninsured.
How To Protect Yourself
In order to protect oneself from an uninsured or underinsured motorist, the best thing is to be aware of the Declarations page of your family’s automobile insurance policy. This can usually be found on the first page of the policy. The Declarations page should have your name and address, all of the vehicles insured, and the insurance company’s name listed. For each vehicle that is insured there should be information on the coverage by the policy.
Types Of Insurance Coverages
It is important to know if the insurance policy has sufficient limits of insurance coverage. Liability Coverage and Uninsured/Underinsured Coverage are the basic coverages on policies. Liability Coverage will list amounts like 25/50, or 50/100, or 100/300. The insurance company will take those numbers and multiply them by $1000. If you were to hit someone and be at fault, the insurance company would have to pay $25,000 for one person, and up to $50,000 for all injured people. In Virginia, the state law states the minimum limit is 25/50. Unfortunately, having a 25/50 insurance limit does not cover much in medical care expenses.
Importance Of Uninsured Or Underinsured Coverage
The second coverage is the Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage, otherwise known as (UM/UIM). Typically, insurance companies provide equal liability and UM/UIM limits. Of course, a person can choose to have a lower UM/UIM limit. Even though, one has the option of doing this, this is not a great idea. UM/UIM coverage can protect you and your family in case you are involved in a car crash, and the other party is an underinsured or uninsured motorist. This is where UM/UIM coverage enters to offset the cost. By having Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage, your insurance can provide coverage. This is also helpful if the other motorist has inadequate insurance, tat is not enough to cover all of the expenses. One can use one’s own UM/UIM coverage to cover the remaining costs. UM/UIM coverage will pay for the costs of every member in your household regardless, if they get hurt in someone else’s car as passengers. This is the best coverage in case you or a family member is seriously injured in a car crash, in which you are not at fault. The other driver must be at fault or at least partially at fault.
Determine Your Insurance Coverage
Take a look at your insurance policy’s coverage for Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage. Take into consideration that car crashes can seriously injure a person. If the car crash is bad enough, it could prevent you from working for a couple of months. The coverage should compensate you for those unexpected expenses and losses. An insurance agent can assist you with increasing your limits. This can be a small price to pay in case you are ever involved in a car crash with an uninsured driver.
Have You Been Involved In A Car Accident In Virginia, Maryland or Washington D.C.?
If you've been hurt in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Vienna, Virgnia office directly at 703.991.7978 or our Rockville, Maryland office at 301.637.5392 to schedule your case consultation.