Each auto insurance policy issued in Florida offers several different types of coverage. Some pay to repair the damage to your car. Some pay to fix the damage that you cause to another person's car. Some pays your medical bills or lost wages.
What is the only coverage that protects you and your family if another driver injures you? It is called uninsured motorist coverage (abbreviated UM). If another driver is negligent, he may have coverage for something called "bodily injury." That is the type of insurance coverage that pays you money for your injuries that the other driver caused. However, bodily injury coverage is optional in Florida, and many drivers do not carry it.
If you are injured by a driver who does not have bodily injury coverage on his insurance, then you have to make a claim against your own auto insurance policy. Specifically, you have to make a claim against the uninsured motorist coverage on your own auto insurance policy. The other driver, who caused your injuries, is "uninsured" to the extent that he has no coverage on his insurance policy that will pay you anything for your injuries.
Unfortunately, this is all too common in Florida. There are a lot of bad drivers who have very little (or no) auto insurance coverage. If you do not have uninsured motorist coverage on your own auto insurance policy, what can you do? Possibly nothing. You may not be able to recover anything, even if you are badly injured.
Even if the other driver has some bodily injury coverage, he may have only a minimal amount. What happens if the other driver only has $10,000 insurance coverage, but you or your family member have bad injuries from the crash? Again, the uninsured motorist coverage on your own auto insurance policy is the only thing that will protect you.
That is why it is so important to include uninsured motorist coverage on your auto insurance policy. It is the most important coverage to have on your auto insurance policy, because it protects you and your family members if you are injured by another driver. Yet, many insurance agents do not explain the importance of uninsured motorist coverage.
If you were injured in a crash when you were a passenger in someone else's car, you also may have an uninsured motorist claim, either against your own auto insurance policy or against the policy held by the driver of the car in which you were a passenger.
If you have been injured in an auto accident in Florida, you need to consult with an experienced auto accident injury attorney. Steven Meyer is board certified as an expert in civil trial law. This area of the law includes auto accidents. Only a small percentage of lawyers in Florida are board certified, and only board certified attorneys may call themselves "experts" or "specialists."
Our office offers a free consultation. If you have been injured in an auto accident anywhere in Florida, please give us a call.