Underinsured and Uninsured Motorist Claim

Experienced Atlantic City and Cape May NJ Uninsured Motorist Lawyer

iStock_000030703104_Large (1)Getting into a car accident is always a stressful situation, but learning that the at-fault driver has no car insurance or too little insurance to pay for your damages can turn an already bad situation into a nightmare. Now, on top of everything else, you begin worrying about how you be able to pay for your costly medical bills and car repairs.

While you do have the option of filing a legal claim against the driver to try to get compensation, most drivers without car insurance usually have too few assets and no way to pay you, even if you do win your case.

If you have uninsured/ underinsured (UM/UIM) motorist coverage, your own insurance policy should pay some or all of your damages. Having UM/UIM coverage can save you from paying for expensive medical treatments and other expenses after being in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. So, how do I know if I have UM/UIM coverage? What will my insurance company pay for? What if my car insurance company denied my accident claim?

During a free initial consultation, an Atlantic City or Cape May uninsured motorist lawyer at our firm can explain what rights you have under New Jersey insurance laws and give you advice about your best legal options to recover compensation after a crash. Insurance law in New Jersey can be confusing, but our accident attorneys are here to help if you have been involved in a crash caused by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. If the insurance company of the at-fault motorist or your provider attempts to get out of their obligation to pay you fairly for the damages, tell them to speak with your lawyer at Targan Pender & Strickland, P.C.

Uninsured vs Underinsured Accident Claims

Uninsured motorist insurance (UM) will cover your damages if you are hit by an uninsured driver. While it is illegal in New Jersey to drive without car insurance, many drivers do so anyway. UM insurance also covers hit-and-run accidents, where it may be impossible for the at-fault driver to be held accountable. When you file an uninsured motorist claim, your own insurance company should pay for your damages up to your policy limit.

Underinsured motorist protection (UIM) works differently. If you are involved in a car accident with an insured driver, sometimes the limits of that driver’s policy will not cover all of your damages. In that case, your UIM coverage will pay the difference, up to your policy limit.

How Does Underinsured Motorist Claims Work?

It is important to note that your UIM policy cannot be used in addition to the other driver’s policy. Your UIM coverage only pays the difference between the two policies.

For example, say you sustain $50,000 in damages as the result of a car accident. The at-fault driver has a $15,000 insurance policy and you have $40,000 in UIM coverage. You may think you are fully covered… However, your UIM insurance will only pay $25,000 – the difference between your policy limit and the amount the other driver’s policy will pay.

Does New Jersey Require UM/UIM Coverage in Car Insurance Policies?

New Jersey insurance requirements are fairly complicated, in part because there are two different kinds of policies you can purchase. The first is the “basic policy,” which includes only the minimum insurance required to drive legally in the state of New Jersey. If you have a basic insurance policy, you are not required to have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage (although you should).

Since basic insurance policies have very limited coverage, most drivers choose to have a “standard policy” instead. Standard New Jersey insurance policies have higher coverage limits, and are required to include uninsured/underinsured coverage. Your UM/UIM limits will generally be the same as your liability policy limits, unless you choose to purchase extra coverage.

Call an Atlantic City Uninsured Motorist Lawyer to Discuss Your Insurance Options

We have assisted drivers in Erma, Rio Grande, Dennisville as well as across Middle and Lower Township in understanding their insurance coverage and best recovery options after collisions. During a free review, we can explain your policy and legal options before you file an insurance claim. Make sure you have the best chance at recovering the most compensation available, contact us online or call one of our qualified car accident attorneys today to schedule a no charge consultation.