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Friday, September 19, 2014

I don't need uninsured motorist coverage! Or do I ?????

Is mandatory auto liability insurance working?  The way liability insurance is supposed to work is that if you are in a car accident, the person who crashed into you should pay for your medical and property damages, which would be paid by their auto insurance company.  But, in some cases, especially if they are not carrying a proper level of coverage, the damages you have could end up costing a lot more than their liability insurance limits cover.  Minimum limits are NOT sufficient to protect you and your assets from the damage you may cause.

Another problem is that not everyone complies with the law. Even though you cannot afford to be without coverage, some may think that auto insurance is too high — especially in tough economic times. The Insurance Research Council estimated that roughly one out of every eight drivers is driving uninsured in 2014. That's about 13 percent of the U.S. population.

Because of this, it is prudent to include uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UI) coverages on your auto policy. UM will pay for your injuries when someone without car insurance causes an accident or when you're struck by a hit-and-run driver. UI will kick in when someone else causes an accident, but has insufficient limits to cover all your costs. UM/UI also pays for lost wages if you have to stay home from work due to your injury.

If you have UM/UI coverage, and you are in an accident caused by an uninsured motorist, your UM/UI coverage will pay for health care expenses, such as your deductible, before your health insurance kicks in.  This will be quite helpful since most people today have high health insurance deductibles.

But, your health insurance will not pay for lost wages if you miss work, or for pain and suffering resulting from the crash. Lost wages and pain and suffering are paid for by the at-fault driver's liability insurance. If the other driver doesn't have liability insurance, or has coverages that are too low, you're out of luck — unless you have UM/UIM coverage or want to pursue the matter in court.

Lawsuits are always costly. First, you must hire an attorney. Second, since uninsured drivers usually don’t have proper coverage, because they cannot afford the car insurance rates, it is unlikely that they can pay for your medical treatments or pain and suffering, even if you win the case.

Because the coverage is so important, Mississippi just passed a law to require extra attention to the topic, if a consumer is considering not taking the valuable UM/UI coverage.  A special disclosure form is required to be provided, and the consumer must sign to indicate that they understand the coverage is available and valuable, and that they are freely choosing to not have the insurance coverage.  So, if there is a lawsuit, and the consumer has freely chosen to decline the UM/UI coverage, the court will not reach a verdict favorable to them.

Bottom line, you need to have UM/UI coverage, for your auto and motorcycle and other toys.  Motorcycles, in particular, are victims of many unintended hit-and-runs, and without UM/UI coverage, they will be left suffering in the ditch after being clipped by a speeding vehicle.  Don’t let this be you!
Your Trusted Choice Insurance Agent, SouthGroup Insurance Gulf Coast wants you to know you can call on us with your questions or concerns seeking more helpful advice or answers to your pressing insurance questions. A full insurance review is always your best bet to make sure you have all of the adequate coverage for your personal insurance needs. Remember, we offer a personalized insurance review to anyone who is interested at no charge – just visit any one of our 3 convenient coastal locations!

We are your LOCAL
Trusted Choice Advisors, SouthGroup-Gulf Coast
,  SALES AND SERVICE AGENTS: Angelyn Treutel Zeringue, Tammy Garfield, Tammy Hogue, Brittany Jones, Denise Russell, Melissa Moran, Alex Treutel, Anne Gillam, Ashlie Moody, Mark Strickland, and Whitney Zimmerman at SouthGroup Gulf Coast. You can reach us by snail-mail or in person: 412 Hwy 90, Suite 6, Bay St Louis MS 39520, email: , phone: 228-466-4498 fax:888-415-8922,  FaceBook, or Twitter !

We have 3 Gulf Coast locations to serve you - 2505 Pass Road - Biloxi, 5400 Indian Hill-Diamondhead, and 412 Hwy 90 Suite 6-Bay Saint Louis, MS. We write coverage in 40 different states and can assist you with Mississippi insurance, Louisiana insurance, and Alabama insurance and many other states.
Insurance is stressful, but we make saving easy.  We help you save money on insurance!

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