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The Importance of Carrying Uninsured Motorist Coverage

Most drivers purchase insurance and assume their costs will be paid if they are in an accident caused by another driver. In reality, this is not always the case. To understand why, you need to understand what insurance actually covers.

Georgia requires all drivers to carry liability insurance, which pays for the medical costs and other expenses of people injured in an accident. Drivers must carry enough bodily injury liability coverage to pay $25,000 per injured person, up to a total of $50,000 per accident. They must also carry $25,000 in property damage liability, which pays for damaged cars, houses or goods.

Many drivers only carry the minimum amount of insurance required by the law. Worse yet, some drivers aren’t insured at all. Accident victims with serious injuries, however, may suffer damages that far exceed the $25,000 in liability insurance coverage.

Making sure you are protected

How can you protect yourself and your family from drivers without insurance or with insufficient coverage? You can purchase Uninsured Motorist/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) coverage from your own insurance company to pay for any damages you suffer beyond the other driver’s coverage. Your UM/UIM coverage will also protect you after a hit-and-run or if you suffer an accident as a pedestrian. Your coverage typically also protects family members living with you and anyone riding in your vehicle.

We recommend purchasing a reasonably high amount of UM/UIM coverage. Although your insurance agent may try to dissuade you, it is important to consider what would happen if you suffered a debilitating injury at the hands of an uninsured driver. In Georgia, two types of coverage are available: stacking and nonstacking. Stacking coverage typically allows injury victims to recover larger amounts, but nonstacking coverage may be less costly.

If you have been involved in a hit-and-run or any other type of auto accident, consult an experienced Atlanta lawyer at McMenamy Law LLC to learn about your options.