Ideally, and according to the law, every driver in the United States would be insured. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Unfortunately, uninsured and underinsured drivers are on the roads, and you have no way of knowing when you’ll come across one.
What is an underinsured driver?
An uninsured driver is one who is on the road without auto insurance. An underinsured driver, however, is one that has insurance, but the limit isn’t high enough to cover the damage caused in an accident.
Every insurance policy comes with a limit to what the insurance company will cover, and individuals can choose the limit they want for their policy. But, if a driver is in an accident with an expensive car or a collision that causes a lot of costly damage, the limit may not be high enough.
How do I handle a collision with an underinsured driver?
The basics of a collision with an underinsured driver are the same as an accident with any other driver.
- Make sure you and your passengers are okay,
- Check on the driver and passengers in the other vehicle,
- If the other driver is leaving the scene, make sure to get as much information from them as possible, including:
○ phone number,
○ insurance information, and
○ license plate number.
- Call the police and ask if they have any requests before they arrive,
- Request an ambulance,
- Take photos of the scene,
- If possible, move the vehicles out of the way of traffic,
- Wait for the police to arrive and make an accident report,
- Contact your insurance company and your collision repair technician to take care of your car and make a claim.
The main difference between an accident with an underinsured driver and an adequately insured driver is that you’ll need to see if your insurance company will cover the costs that the other driver and his or her insurance company is unable to pay.
Do I have to pay?
Whether or not your insurance company will pay for the costs associated with your accident depend on your insurance policy. Many insurance companies offer uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, so that when you are in an accident with an underinsured motorist, your policy is intended to cover the costs, up to your limit.