The aftermath of a car accident creates confusion, frustration, and, depending on the collision’s severity, physical pain. Discovering that the driver responsible for the crash lacks motor vehicle insurance or only has minimum coverage only adds to the aggravation you face following the moment of impact and the aftermath.

Options for motor vehicle owners

The good news is that insurance companies are required by the State of California to provide you the option of purchasing uninsured motorist coverage (UM) and underinsured motorist coverage (UIM). Essentially, those options make up for the responsible party’s lack of liability insurance or limits that were too minimal to financially cover all the damages.

Choosing not to have that level of coverage requires a signed waiver. The long-term consequences of not having enough insurance coverage can be costly beyond the financial losses, particularly if you suffered serious injuries. Presuming that a crash will never happen and, if it does, the individual who caused it would be fully covered is a risk that may not be worth taking.

Adding UM/UIM coverage to your motor vehicle policy could financially cover you and any passengers in the car when the collision occurred. Typically, the cost of purchasing the coverage is small in comparison to the money you would receive should you need the coverage. The policy covers bodily injuries at the same rate as your main auto insurance policy. Uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD) coverage can also be purchased to cover the costs of repairing your car.

While nothing can wind the clock back to prevent the accident, having uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage can help you move on following a tragic event.


By Maho | Prentice, LLP Attorneys at Law on November 17, 2020