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Uninsured Motorist Coverage Attorneys in Tallahassee, Florida

Due to the pandemic and remote work policies in place in 2020, traffic accidents in Florida dropped to 336,062, with 3,156 of them being deadly. With residents now returning to work, and also returning to the highways for recreational and shopping purposes, those numbers can be expected to rise.

It has been estimated that the average driver who spends their adulthood behind the wheel will experience three or four traffic accidents in their lifetime. No one leaves home expecting to get in a collision, but some 300,000 to 400,000 Floridians, on average, do just that every year. To make matters worse, about one in four drivers chooses to operate their vehicle without insurance.

If you’re involved in a crash with an uninsured motorist, you could face huge out-of-pocket medical and other expenses. If the other driver can’t afford insurance, it’s unlikely they have enough assets that you can collect from a lawsuit to cover your expenditures. This is where the option of uninsured motorist (UM) insurance comes into play. UM is not mandatory, but it covers you when the limits of your policy have been reached and you can’t collect from the other driver’s non-existent insurance.

Let’s face it: if you’re injured, medical expenses can get out of hand quickly. If you’ve been hurt in an auto accident in or around Tallahassee, Florida, contact the attorneys at Larry K White, LLC. We can listen to your story, investigate your situation, and determine which legal options are available for you to recover the compensation you deserve. We also proudly serve clients in Quincy/Gadsden County, Gainesville, Jacksonville, and Monticello/Jefferson County.

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Florida Insurance Laws

Florida is a no-fault auto insurance state with low minimum coverage levels. By law, all a driver needs is to purchase personal injury protection (PIP) to the tune of $10,000 in coverage, and property damage liability (PDL) coverage for the same amount.

If you’re injured in a car crash and go to the emergency room and they keep you overnight in a hospital bed, your PIP coverage can be exhausted quickly. An overnight stay could run up to $20,000, and your $10,000 will be gone in a flash. Plus, Florida insurers generally cover only 80 percent of your medical expenses and about 60 percent of any lost wages you suffer.

You can certainly purchase higher limits, which would be a wise choice, but adding uninsured motorist (UM) coverage can also protect you if the other driver is operating their vehicle without insurance. Plus, if you have more than one vehicle, you can “stack” your UM coverage, which effectively doubles or triples your coverage amounts.

The Uninsured Motorist Option

You may think that your health insurance will cover all of your medical expenses if you’re injured. However, you may have to use the policy’s network of providers to be reimbursed. Plus, you will have to come up with copays and face deductibles that you’ll need to pay out of pocket.

UM coverage has none of those restrictions. In addition to medical expenses, it will also cover lost wages, future loss of earning potential, pain and suffering, and even funeral expenses if you or a passenger suffers a fatality.

Stacking UM Coverage

If you choose UM coverage when you purchase your automobile insurance, it generally will be offered stacked. Stacked means the policy covers every vehicle you own in the same amount, but it allows the coverage to be combined, or stacked.

This may seem a bit confusing, but let’s consider an example. You have two cars—yours and your spouse’s. You purchase UM coverage of $50,000 for each person injured and $100,000 total for all persons injured. Since you have two vehicles covered, the limits are stacked, so that now you have $100,000/$200,000 in coverage for any accident.

You can also choose not to stack the coverage. This makes sense if you have only one vehicle. Unstacking the coverage on multiple vehicles may lower your annual premium, but there are a number of other legal complexities to consider.

Don’t be surprised if the insurance company you’re dealing with underplays or doesn’t even broach the subject of UM coverage. After all, it only opens the company up to higher liability.

Getting the Guidance You Need

Florida is known for having the highest rate of uninsured motorists in the nation, but even drivers with basic coverage, $10,000 PIP and $10,000 PDL, are woefully uninsured if a serious injury occurs. Though you can seek to recover expenses from other drivers when circumstances warrant it, they may not have the resources to make up for your losses.

This is where uninsured motorist insurance comes in. You may use your UM policy to make up for any expenses or losses incurred in a car crash over and above your PIP.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage Attorneys in Tallahassee, Florida

At Larry K White, LLC, our attorneys are experienced in personal injury claims stemming from auto accidents, and we will be happy to consult with you if you or a loved one has suffered injuries. We will fight for you and your just compensation. Contact us immediately if you’re in or around Tallahassee, Florida.