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Duffy & Feemster

Don't Assume Other Drivers Have Car Insurance: Protect Yourself With Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Myth: If you have car insurance and are hurt in an accident caused by someone else, you won't have to pay for anything. That's what insurance is for, right?

Reality: If the person who causes your car accident is carrying little or no liability coverage, you could be left with hefty medical bills that you are unable to pay.

How can you avoid a situation like this? Unfortunately, there's nothing you can do about Georgia drivers who choose to make risky decisions about their auto insurance. However, you can beef up your own car insurance coverage to try and protect yourself from negligent individuals on the road. One smart way to do this is by purchasing uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

Uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance is something you add to your policy in the event you are in an accident with someone who has no car insurance, or only has the minimum insurance required by the state. For example, in Georgia, drivers must carry at least minimum liability insurance amounts: $25,000 for bodily injury, $50,000 per occurrence, and $25,000 for property damage. If a driver causes an accident, the damages are generally paid for with the liability insurance. However, there are situations in which the cost of an accident may far exceed those amounts, or the person may not have any insurance at all. Even worse, you could be involved in a hit-and-run accident and have no idea who caused the crash.

Unfortunately, even if you do the right thing and carry car insurance according to state law, you can still end up paying out of pocket if you're injured in an accident caused by someone else. By purchasing uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, you are adding an extra layer of financial protection that could make a big difference if you're hurt. How much uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage should you purchase? As much as you can afford. It's much better to be safe than sorry.

Were you involved in a car accident and found that uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage was a wise purchase? Tell us about it!

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