If you were the victim of a car accident and have suffered injuries, then your insurance or the other driver’s insurance will generally be responsible for paying the costs of your treatment and recovery. If the other driver was at fault, a St. Louis car accident attorney can help you file a claim for compensation.
Do you also need to carry uninsured motorists coverage? Let’s take a look at the costs of not opting for this type of insurance.
Auto Insurance in Missouri
Missouri is an at-fault state, which means that the damage will be paid by the insurance company of the at-fault driver. All drivers must carry an auto insurance policy that covers both property damage and bodily injury. The minimum requirements for the basic insurance policy you must have are:
- $25,000/person in case you have to cover bodily injuries (with a maximum of $50,000 per case)
- $25,000 property damage
Besides the main auto insurance policy that you must carry as a Missouri resident, you must also have uninsured motorist coverage (UMC.) This policy can cover your bodily injuries and property damages in case the at-fault driver doesn’t carry insurance at all or you are the victim of a hit-and-run, where the author is not found.
The UMC policy is part of your own insurance coverage, and it can save you quite a lot of money.
What Are the Costs of Not Buying UMC
First of all, as mentioned, UMC is required by law in Missouri, even though it’s optional in other states. Don’t mistake the uninsured motorist policy with the underinsured motorist coverage (UIM), as the latter is optional and it covers your damage when the other driver’s policy does not have a high enough limit to cover your injuries or property damage.
More than that, the uninsured motorist coverage policy is part of the mandatory car insurance policy. If you don’t provide proof of insurance when you’re pulled over, you are facing a $300 fine, 15 days in jail or four points on your driving record. The judge will decide what penalty to apply, depending on the circumstances.
But the administrative and legal penalties are not the worst that can happen if you lack the uninsured motorist coverage.
A car accident can leave you with significant property damage and serious bodily injuries. Not being covered in case the other motorist lacks insurance can mean paying for your medical bills out of your own pocket since you don’t have any insurance coverage.
Always Carry Insurance
In conclusion, if you are trying to save every dollar by choosing less insurance coverage for your car, think about the potential expenses you would have to pay if you were hit by an uninsured driver. UMC policies start at around $150 a year, which is cheap for what they offer if ever needed.
Uninsured motorist coverage is a must! Additionally, you should also consider adding underinsured motorist coverage. You will be more relaxed about driving when you know that your insurance policy will pay off.
If you have been involved in a car accident, you can be sure the insurance company will do everything in their power to minimize to deny your claim. Speak with an experienced car accident lawyer today to protect your legal right to compensation.
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