Uninsured motorist property damage helps protect you financially on the road if someone hits you by a driver without insurance. Or, whose insurance limits aren’t high enough to pay for the extent of the damage they’ve caused. And, in some states, if you are the victim of a hit-and-run. However, in certain states, we need to identify the hit-and-run driver to be able to receive payment. People often confuse Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury coverage, also known as UMBI, with UMPD. This coverage, as the name suggests, pays for medical expenses, but it doesn’t stop there.
UMBI also covers lost wages and loss due to pain and suffering. Both UMBI and UMPD are essential parts of Uninsured Motorist Insurance. While underinsured motorist coverage is a protection that helps pay for your expenses if you’re hit by an underinsured driver. In some states, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is bundled together as single protection on your car insurance policy. Each state defines “underinsured” differently. An underinsured driver has auto liability insurance. But, more often than not their liability thresholds aren’t sufficient to cover your expenses after an accident. And, there can be times when their liability limits are lower than or equal to your underinsured motorist coverage limit. Similar to uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage includes both property damage and bodily injury damage.
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Both coverage types cover injuries to you and passengers if you’re in a car accident due to:
- First, a driver who doesn’t carry any liability car insurance.
- Second, a driver who doesn’t have enough liability insurance to cover your medical bills.
- Third, a driver whose insurance company denies coverage or goes out of business.
If such an event happens UMPD coverage can help you cover the following:
- Repair costs to fix your car
- Extra costs if the other driver doesn’t have enough property damage liability insurance
- Damage to your home or other property
- Medical bills.
- Lost wages if you can’t work because of the car accident.
- Pain and suffering compensation.
- Funeral expenses.
- In some states, car damage.
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It is a requirement in some states and is optional in others. But, it should be a serious coverage consideration for everyone buying car insurance. If you have collision insurance, it is not necessary to have uninsured motorist property damage. This is because they cover the same thing. In the event that you get hit by an uninsured motorist and you have an existing collision insurance policy that would cover you. If you have collision coverage, however, you will have to pay the deductible on the claim, unless you also have a collision deductible waiver on your policy. Normally, the deductible on UMPD is not as high as one for collision coverage. Because rates have a tendency to be lower, buying UMPD coverage makes for a good investment when you have an older vehicle that you don’t want to carry comprehensive and collision on.
There are two categories of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. These are Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage and Uninsured Motorist Property Damage Coverage.
UNINSURED MOTORIST BODILY INJURY COVERAGE
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury can cover the costs if you get hurt in an accident involving an uninsured or underinsured driver. It can also pay for injuries to you or your passengers under the following circumstances:
- When an uninsured driver is deemed at-fault
- If you become the victim of a hit-and-run driver
- If you are hit by an uninsured driver while cycling or walking.
This coverage includes medical expenses and lost wages; it may even pay for rehabilitation or funeral costs if you or a passenger dies in an accident.
UNINSURED MOTORIST PROPERTY DAMAGE COVERAGE
Uninsured Motorist Property Damage pays for damages when your car or other property is hit by an uninsured driver. Normally, the costs of repairing your car after another driver hits you would be part of their liability insurance. But, if the other driver is uninsured, you’ll need uninsured motorist coverage or be stuck paying for the damage yourself.
Not all states and insurance companies offer both types of coverage. UMBI is the more important of the two since you likely have other types of insurance that will protect you from injury. UMPD is often referred to simply as “uninsured motorist insurance.”
Gap insurance is a different thing entirely from uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. This type of insurance pays for the difference between the value of a vehicle at the time it is totaled and the amount that’s owed on the loan or lease. Standard auto insurance only pays for the listed fair market value of the vehicle at the time of the accident. This is sometimes a vastly different value than the amount you owe on the loan. While it may sound that gap insurance is named for that “gap” between the vehicle’s value and what’s owed, it actually stands for “guaranteed asset protection” insurance and helps you avoid having to pay off the entirety of your loan in the event of an accident.
Vehicles lose their value rapidly, usually between 20% and 30% in the first year you own one. If you have financed a large portion of the purchase price of your car, an accident could leave you with a bill to pay. If you have purchased a car and have financed it, it’s advisable that you purchase gap insurance coverage. This is especially true if put down a small down payment or none at all, you drive a lot, you agreed to a loan term longer than 48 months, are leasing your car, or you purchased a car that depreciates faster than average. Gap insurance is available from three main sources. First, your auto insurer as part of your regular policy. Then, through your dealership or lender as a one-time fee, and lastly if you purchase it directly from a company that sells only gap insurance.
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The cost of gap insurance depends on where you purchase it. Gap insurance from a dealer or lender may cost a one-time fee of $500 to $700. But, that amount is added to your loan total. And, you end up paying interest on the gap insurance the same as you would on your loan. Separately purchased gap insurance typically runs a one-time fee of $200 to $300. For the money, purchasing gap insurance through your auto insurance is generally your best buy.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I HAVE THIS COVERAGE AND MY CAR HAD BEEN HIT BY AN UNINSURED DRIVER?
If you have either Collision or UMPD coverage, you would file a claim with your insurance company, pay the deductible, and receive the funds to repair your vehicle, up to the limit stated in your policy. At Say, UMPD deductibles vary by state that ranges between $200-$250 and you can purchase any of these coverage limits from $10,000 to $25,000 per accident.
It is a standard to buy an uninsured motorist policy in at least the same amount as your liability thresholds. So, the more properties and items you have under your name, and the more liability insurance you purchase, the higher your premiums for uninsured motorist coverage are likely to be. Still, uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance is cheaper than liability coverage when purchased in the same amounts that are generally less than half the cost. The limit of coverage you purchase also affects rates of course the higher the limit, the greater the cost of the premium. Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is not always easy to understand. Always work with an experienced agent to decide on the appropriate coverage limits you want.
IS UMPD A REQUIREMENT?
It depends on where you live, because uninsured motorist coverage may be required by law. It is a requirement by federal law to carry auto insurance in Denver, CO, and other US states. So, it may be sound advice to consider an uninsured motorist policy, even if it is just an add-on option in your state.
Even with almost every state requiring a minimum amount of auto insurance, there are still a number of motorists on the road who do not own car insurance or who have policies that would not cover all of the costs related to an accident. If you file a claim after an uninsured or underinsured driver causes a car crash or accident, you could still wind up paying for expenses upfront if the at-fault driver does not have sufficient insurance coverage for your damaged auto or medical bills.
Just be sure to speak with your agent about your intentions to ensure you get all the coverage you need for you to be ok with your plan.
WE ARE HERE FOR YOU!
As every state has its differences regarding its regulations that are related to insurance policies, you may check your insurance agent in Denver, CO, or any other state. If you need help or clarifications regarding the information above, connect with us right now. Feel free to call us toll-free at 1(720) 221-8168 or use the chatbox function a the lower-right of your computer or mobile device. We’ll do our best to give you answers at the soonest time possible.