Do I Need Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage in Florida?
Despite a driver’s best precautions, the risk of a car accident is real. Based on accident statistics, it is estimated that the average driver will be in three to four accidents over the span of their lifetime.
Ample insurance coverage is the best way to protect oneself from the financial hardship of accident expenses. Many drivers wonder if they need uninsured and/or underinsured motorist coverage in Florida. Here, car accident lawyers from Chanfrau & Chanfrau discuss insurance coverage requirements in Florida and the potential benefits of uninsured/underinsured coverage for drivers in Daytona Beach, FL, Palm Coast, FL, and surrounding areas.
What Is Uninsured/Underinsured Insurance Coverage?
Uninsured and underinsured insurance coverage works in much the same way as bodily injury insurance coverage. This protection provides the policyholder financial compensation to cover accident damages when a collision is caused by a reckless or negligent driver who is either uninsured, or who lacks sufficient coverage to pay for the full extent of accident damages. In the event of an uninsured driver, the policy can cover all accident damages, if an at-fault driver is underinsured, the policy will cover any gaps between the other driver’s policy limit and the actual damages of the accident.
What Types of Damages Are Covered by this Insurance?
Uninsured and underinsured insurance coverage compensates accident victims for a comprehensive range of damages, including:
- Past, present, and future medical expenses related to accident injuries
- Lost wages
- Loss of wage earning potential
- Pain and suffering
Is Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage Required by the State of Florida?
The state of Florida requires drivers to carry a minimum amount of insurance coverage, but it does not mandate that drivers purchase uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance. Although this is an optional type of coverage, all insurance companies must offer it. If drivers decline to carry uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, they will need to notify their insurance company in writing.
Benefits of Uninsured/Underinsured Insurance Coverage
Although the state does not require drivers to carry uninsured and/or underinsured motorist coverage, we strongly advise our Daytona Beach clients to do so. Insurance companies often do not push their policyholders to carry this coverage if they opt out, but that is because this coverage is far more beneficial to drivers than it is to the insurance company.
Even though drivers are legally required to carry insurance, it is estimated that nearly 25 percent of Florida drivers are uninsured. Of those who are insured, many carry only minimum coverage, which means they may not have enough coverage to compensate for the full extent of accident damages.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage saves drivers from serious financial hardship should they be unfortunate enough to be involved in a crash with a driver who lacks sufficient insurance. The cost of adding this additional coverage is usually much cheaper than the long-term costs of an accident.
Contact Our Practice
If you’ve been injured by an uninsured driver and you do not carry uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance, the car accident lawyers at Chanfrau & Chanfrau can assist you in filing a lawsuit to pursue financial compensation for accident damages. To learn more about your legal options, send us a message online, or call (386) 258-7313 at your earliest convenience.