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MI Auto Law - Noting the Differences Between "Uninsured" and "Underinsured"

Practicing law in a metropolitan area, a Detroit personal injury lawyer is likely to represent a number of clients that have sustained severe personal injury or died as the result of car accidents. When an incident occurs, insurance matters come into play. Likely, many people across the State of Michigan will hear terms they’re not familiar with when filing a claim with their insurance company. Specifically, confusion often stems from the terms “uninsured” motorist coverage and “underinsured” motorist coverage. Both are relatively inexpensive, and having coverage under both policies could prove beneficial.

Uninsured motorist coverage generally refers to optional coverage that is purchased from the driver’s own auto insurance company. This coverage protects you for damages caused by the negligence of another person who does not have insurance, or in the event of a hit-and-run accident. If a person with this coverage is involved in a car accident with someone who either leaves the scene or is uninsured, the injured party can seek payment from their own insurance company up to the limit of their uninsured motorist coverage; basically serving as a replacement for the negligent driver’s missing liability coverage. Having this insurance, although optional, is a great way to protect yourself in the event of a car accident, as unfortunately many drivers on the road do not have insurance.

Underinsured motorist coverage is very similar to uninsured motorist coverage. This coverage kicks in after a car accident occurs where the at-fault driver does have auto insurance, but not enough coverage to compensate the injured non-at fault driver for his or her injuries. Many states have minimum liability limits–the State of Michigan specifically, sets the minimum liability limit at $20,000. In order to comply with the law and not drive without any insurance, many drivers will only carry the minimum $20,000 of liability insurance. If you are seriously injured in a car accident and have “underinsured” motorist coverage, you can make a claim for compensation from your own insurance company for an amount up to your underinsured limits, less the amount of the at-fault driver’s insurance. Having both “uninsured” and “underinsured” motorist coverage on your auto insurance policy is a must – it keeps you and your family covered from the negligence of both uninsured driver’s and those with very little insurance.

Keeping these tips in mind is essential for all Michigan drivers. Car Accidents can happen at any time, having devastating and life changing consequences. It is important that in the event of an accident, Michigan drivers are as prepared as possible. This includes having the most cautious and preventative insurance policies possible under your personal budget. An hard-working and aggressive Detroit personal injury attorney can provide answers to all of the questions an injured person will undoubtedly have regarding their case, as well as provide the best legal representation possible to ensure the most positive outcome.