Hi, I’m Pete Fernandez. I’m an Allstate
agency owner with offices in the Bucktown and Jefferson Park neighborhoods in Chicago.
I deal a lot with uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.
This type of coverage on your car insurance policy may help protect you and your vehicle
if you’re hit by one of these types of drivers. An uninsured driver does not have auto liability
insurance to help pay for the damages they cause. An underinsured driver has liability
insurance, but the limits may not be enough to cover all of your damages.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage may help pay for:
Your resulting medical bills Medical bills for your passengers involved
in the crash, or, in some states, Damage to your vehicle
In fact, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is required in some states and optional
in others. There was this one customer, a 50-year-old
man, who was crossing the street one day when a driver making a right turn didn’t see
him. The car clipped him and broke his leg, and
he had to have emergency surgery. The driver actually had insurance, but their
policy just didn’t cover all the damages the accident caused, such as lost wages and
medical bills. A few weeks later, we went over his policy
together and I told him, ‘You can make a claim under your underinsured motorist coverage,
which may help offset what you can’t get back from the driver’s policy.’
He was ecstatic — he wasn’t certain whether his auto policy would cover it, since the
accident involved him being a pedestrian and didn’t happen while he was driving.
In my area, a lot of drivers carry the minimum liability limits required by the state, or
drive without insurance. The financial consequences can be serious if one of those drivers hits
you. Once you explain how uninsured and underinsured
motorist coverage may help in those situations, for most people it’s kind of an eye-opener.