Being injured in an auto accident is traumatic, but that trauma can be magnified if there is insufficient insurance to compensate you for your injuries. You can protect yourself and your family by being smart about your own coverage before an accident by purchasing sufficient uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.
Although the law prohibits driving without insurance, there are unfortunately drivers who ignore that law or only carry the legal minimum of insurance. This problem has gotten worse as the economy has declined. In New York the law requires every motor vehicle to carry personal injury liability insurance and uninsured motorist insurance with coverage of at least $25,000 per person and $50,000 per incident.
Supplemental uninsured motorist (SUM) coverage takes the place of the insurance the uninsured driver should have had and is for an amount greater than the legally required minimum.
Underinsured motorist (UM) coverage protects you if the insurance for a vehicle that has injured you is not enough to cover your injuries.
For example, if you are injured by a car that has the New York State minimum insurance of $25,000 but your injuries are so severe that they would be valued at $250,000 or more, you would still only be entitled to $25,000 from the negligent driver’s insurance policy. However, if you had opted to purchase underinsured motorist coverage you could seek additional sums from your own carrier.
Unfortunately, many people do not understand the value of SUM and UM coverage until it is too late. By adding this coverage to your policy you can protect yourself and your family in the event of a serious accident. If you have questions about what your policy covers feel free to call us.
Even when you are in the right in a car accident, collecting from an insurance company can be very difficult. Insurance companies frequently deny or contest claims, or offer sums that are less than what the injured person deserves.
Insurance companies have lawyers representing them, so it is important that you have a lawyer representing you if you are injured in an auto accident. This is true even if you are dealing with your own insurance company.
Bonina and Bonina, P.C. has been representing seriously injured people in auto accident cases for 50 years. Both partners at Bonina and Bonina, P.C. have the highest possible “AV” rating by Martindale Hubbell. Senior trial attorney John Bonina has been repeatedly selected for inclusion in New York Magazine’s “Best Lawyers” Issue. Both Andrea Bonina and John Bonina have been repeatedly selected for inclusion in “Super Lawyers”.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, we will listen to you, explain your options, and help you decide what action to take. The consultation is free, whether you call toll free at 1-888-MEDLAW1 or fill out a contact form on our website.