2 Questions To Ask Before You Decide To Skimp on Auto Insurance Coverage

Every time you get behind the wheel, you risk getting into an accident. In order to get protection and peace of mind, you purchase auto insurance, which is actually required for drivers in most states.  But what happens to drivers who are uninsured? If you aren’t sure whether your current auto insurance covers injuries or damages caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver, you should review your policy and find out if you should make any changes.  But, if you happen to be one of the uninsured, you should learn about the possible legal and financial repercussions. Here are two questions to ask a lawyer and insurance carrier.

1. What could happen if I cause an accident resulting in injuries and/or car damage?

You might be responsible for paying medical expenses if the injured person doesn’t have uninsured motorist (UM) coverage. The injured driver could then try to take you to court to receive a judgment, which will make you lawfully bound to provide compensation.  Even if the court finds you unable to afford the full cost, you could still be mandated to provide some type of regular payment to the plaintiff. Another potential burden for the uninsured is getting caught without insurance.  Depending on which state you live in, you could lose your license, pay fines, or face jail time. Also, expect your rates to skyrocket if you want to purchase auto coverage in the future.

2. What if I have some coverage but not enough to cover the damages?

If you have limited coverage, your policy might not repay all the expenses in the accident claim. In this case, the driver filing the claim would need to be covered by their own auto policy with underinsured motorist coverage (UIM).  For example, if your insurance covers $10 thousand dollars, but the claim is seeking $15 thousand, then the injured driver’s UIM coverage will pay the remaining $5 thousand dollars. However, since UIM doesn’t cover car damage, you could be sued for compensation for repairs if the plaintiff’s collision coverage doesn’t pay for it.

Driving without auto insurance risks legal and financial issues that could significantly impact your life. If you are hesitant to purchase coverage due to the expense, there are auto insurance companies that provide policies for drivers with limited income. Talk to family and friends for recommendations and research consumer reviews online to find a carrier that will offer a reasonable price and a policy that will protect you. A car accident lawyer from a law firm like Ward & Ward Law Firm may also be especially useful for these types of circumstances.