Pros and Cons of Uninsured Motorist Coverage

According to the Insurance Information Institute, about 14% of Texas drivers are uninsured. Any motorist can be underinsured since whether they are “underinsured” depends on your compensation needs, not their insurance coverage. So, how do you secure compensation if you are in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver? Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) insurance can help.   

Texas Mandatory Minimum Car Insurance Coverage

Texas requires all of its drivers to carry the following minimum auto insurance

  • $30,000 per person  in bodily injury liability coverage;
  • $60,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage (no matter how many injured parties there are); and
  • $25,000 in property damage liability insurance.

You can call this amount of coverage ‘30/60/25’ coverage. You can purchase more than this amount, but you cannot purchase less.

Is UM/UIM Mandatory in Texas?

No, UM/UIM insurance is not mandatory in Texas, but many people think it is. Texas will automatically apply $30,000 UM/UIM to your coverage (and charge you for it) unless you turn down the offer in writing when you purchase your mandatory liability insurance. 

You’re Covered in an Accident with an Uninsured Driver

Uninsured motorist insurance covers you under the following circumstances: 

  • The driver failed to purchase insurance;
  • The driver injured you or damaged your vehicle in a ‘road rage’ incident (which most liability insurance companies refuse to cover); or
  • The driver was driving a car without the owner’s permission (which invalidates insurance coverage in most instances) 

As in other instances, the insurance company will not pay more than its policy limits.

You’re Covered in Most Hit and Run Accidents

Under most circumstances, uninsured motorist insurance will treat a hit-and-run accident where the driver escaped as an accident with a driver who lacks insurance.

You’re Covered for Property Damage as Well as Personal Injury 

If your late-model BMW is totaled, for example, your damages could easily exceed $25,000. Your underinsured motorist insurance should cover the amount that exceeds $25,000 up to policy limits. 

You’re Covered When the At-Fault Driver’s Insurance is Insufficient

30/60/25 is not a lot of insurance. Your compensation needs could easily exceed that amount in a serious accident. Fortunately, underinsured motorist insurance covers you (up to policy limits) even if the other driver was carrying the full amount of mandatory Texas auto liability insurance.

UM/UIM Offers Full Personal Injury Damages

Texas UM/UIM coverage covers both economic and non-economic damages. That includes, for example, medical expenses, lost earnings, and pain and suffering. It does not cover punitive damages.

The Cons

These are the disadvantages of UM/UIM insurance:

  • Insurance costs money. UM/UIM insurance will probably set you back no more than $100. It could cost you more than that, however.
  • The typical deductible is $250 for property damage (but $0 for bodily injury). The $250 must come out of your own pocket–you cannot apply liability insurance payouts to cover this amount.
  • UM doesn’t apply if a hit-and-run driver harmed you by causing you to swerve into an object (other than the offending driver’s car).

Purchasing UM/UIM insurance makes a lot of sense, given its great advantages and minimal disadvantages.

Purchasing the Right Insurance Can Help You Get the Compensation You Need

UM/UIM insurance may or may not be the right insurance coverage for you. Regardless of whether it is or not, you do need to set up an appropriate insurance coverage plan before you have an accident. If you don’t, then by the time your luck runs out, it will be too late to purchase insurance. If that happens, you might need a lawyer to help you find a second defendant who you can hold liable for the remainder of your claim.

If you are involved in a collision, it is crucial to contact an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Many personal injury lawyers use the contingency fee system, where their legal fees equal a certain percentage of the amount of money you win. This means there is little risk in having uninsured motorist coverage or hiring a car accident attorney.

Contact the Car Accident Law Firm of Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers in Bedford for Help Today

For more information, please contact an experienced car accident lawyer at Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers to schedule a free initial consultation today. We have convenient locations in Fort Worth and Bedford, Texas.

Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers – Fort Worth
209 N Hampton St,
Fort Worth, TX 76102

(817) 510-9400

Parker Law Firm Injury Lawyers – Bedford
2317 Plaza Pkwy #100,
Bedford, TX 76021

(817) 503-9200