Uninsured Motorists

Uninsured Motorist Insurance Coverage - Anyone who has automobile insurance NEEDS to get this coverage. It is not mandatory to have it but you could be very sorry if you do not pay the very small extra cost to have Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage on your automobile insurance policy. Basically what it does is allows you to recover for bodily injury when in a motor vehicle accident, and the at fault party has no insurance on their vehicle. Or the at fault party does not have ENOUGH liability insurance coverage to properly compensate you for your injuries. It will also allow you to bring a bodily injury claim when the at fault party leaves the scene of the accident, in what is more commonly known as a "hit and run" situation.

I know a lot of people want to get the minimum amount of auto insurance because it is the cheapest way to go, but Uninsured Motorist Coverage is only a few extra dollars every six months on your policy. When you purchase UM coverage on your policy, I recommend getting at least $100,000/$300,000 in UM bodily injury coverage. Also make sure it is the ADD ON kind of UM coverage. This means that you are covered for up to $100,000 in UM coverage per person in the accident ON TOP OF whatever amounts of liability coverage that the at fault driver has. (With a maximum of $300,000 in UM coverage being paid out for all people injured in the accident.)

A lot of you want to get the minimum amount of UM coverage which is $25,000. If you do not get ADD ON coverage, but instead get OFFSET coverage, then the $25,000 you have in UM coverage will be cancelled (or offset) by the liability coverage on the at fault vehicle. With basic OFFSET UM coverage, you need to have more in UM coverage than what the at fault driver has in liability coverage. (An example is the at fault driver has $25,000 in liability coverage and you have $50,000 in UM coverage on your vehicle. If you have serious injuries, you can collect $25,000 from the at fault insurance and up to another $25,000 from your own UM coverage for a total recovery of $50,000. If you have $50,000 in ADD ON coverage, you can collect up to a total of $75,000 for your injuries.) If you have the same amount of OFFSET UM coverage, your UM coverage is useless. So remember, when you are getting automobile insurance, make sure you have at least $100,000 in UM ADD ON coverage. It is the best deal out there considering what the cost of the coverage is, versus what you would get if you were seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident. (You would automatically be able to try and collect an additional $100,000 on top of whatever the liability insurance coverage limits are for your accident!!)

There are many other nuances under Georgia Accident Law as it relates to UM coverage. Including that even if you as the person injured in a motor vehicle accident do not have UM coverage on the vehicle you were driving, you can bring an Uninsured Motorist Claim under a resident relative's auto insurance policy if they were living with you at the time of the accident, and that relative had UM coverage on their auto insurance policy at the time of the accident. Do NOT question why you can bring a claim under an insurance policy whose vehicle was not even involved in the accident, just know that is the law in the state of Georgia.

In conclusion, this all may sound very technical, but just know that you NEED UM coverage when driving a motor vehicle. GET $100,000 in ADD ON UM bodily injury coverage. Everything else will take care of itself. I tell you this with absolute certainty.

We will see you all back for more injury law information in the near future. Be safe everybody.

 

Frequently Asked Questions For Auto Accidents

Q: Do I need to go the the Emergency room?

A: Only go to the Emergency Room after a motor vehicle accident (MVA) if you are SERIOUSLY injured.  Hospitals will sometimes run up very large bills if you have been in an MVA.  The insurance companies when paying a settlement will not consider large emergency room bills if the tests done at the hospital are negative.

Q: Do I need to go to a Doctor right away?

A: If you are injured from a  Motor Vehicle Accident, get medical treatment sooner rather than later.  Go to the Emergency Room if you are seriously injured.  If you are injured and need medical treatment but not necessarily in an emergency room – go to a medical doctor as soon as possible. Gaps in medical treatment after a  Motor Vehicle Accident are very bad for your case.

Q: What if I do not have the money or insurance to go see a doctor for my injuries?

A: If you do not have the means to see a doctor, and you are injured from a Motor Vehicle Accident contact the Law Office of Perry Ellis right away, and we will get you to a good medical doctor to treat your injuries.
 

Q: What insurance should I use for medical treatment?

A: If you have Group Health Insurance or Medical Payments coverage on your auto insurance policy, use your insurance to get medical treatment after a Motor Vehicle Accident.

Q: Can I use my group health insurance in the ER?

A: If you do go to the Emergency Room as a result of a Motor Vehicle Accident, and you have group health insurance, make sure to give it to the billing department at the hospital.

Q: What should I say to if I speak to the other drivers insurance company?

A: If you talk with the at fault driver's insurance company before hiring an attorney, and they ask you if you were injured in the accident,  even if you are only a little bit sore, say YES I was injured.  Because a lot of the time people feel progressively worse, as more time passes after the accident.

Q: Should I tell them about my specific injuries?

A: Do not give details of your injuries to the insurance company.  Be as general as possible. If you say one specific bodypart, and later on other bodyparts start to hurt also, the insurance company may be skeptical that you are even injured at all.  And that will decrease the settlement value of the entire case.

Q: Why can’t I just deal directly with the other drivers insurance company to get my medical treatment and lost income paid?

A: The at fault drivers insurance will NOT pay for your medical treatment, or pay your medical bills as they come due, or pay you for your lost income as a result of being disabled from work from the Motor Vehicle Accident.  They WILL pay a lump sum settlement after you are finished treatment, that will include money for any income lost as a result of being injured from the accident that can be legitimately verified by your employer, as well as money to cover your medical bills that resulted from being injured in the accident BUT they probably won’t pay you the amount you deserve!   The Law Firm of Perry Dean Ellis is YOUR advocate, not the insurance company.


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