Uninsured and Underinsured (UM/UIM) Motorist Coverage in Indiana:
Compensation in Uninsured/Underinsured Driver Accidents
All drivers in Indiana are required to carry liability insurance. But not all drivers do. You share the road with thousands of people who have no insurance or minimal insurance.
Indiana law requires minimum liability coverage of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident to cover medical expenses of injured persons. In the event of a motorcycle accident or car accident caused by the other driver's negligence, you can file a claim against their liability policy.
Uninsured Motorist / Underinsured Motorist
But if the driver has no insurance, or the available coverage is insufficient to cover your medical bills, you would be responsible for paying the remainder. To protect innocent victims from this common scenario, insurance companies issue two optional coverages: uninsured motorist insurance and underinsured motorist insurance. (These are usually issued together, and may appear on your insurance card as "UM/UIM.")
In a personal injury settlement claim or lawsuit, liability of the other driver (also referred to as fault or negligence) must first be determined. If the other driver is found liable for the accident, Sevenish Law Firm applies the available insurance coverage.
- If the driver (illegally) has no insurance, you would be paid by your insurance company under your Underinsured Motorist policy, up to the limits of your policy.
- If the at-fault driver has only the minimum liability coverage ($25,000), but your medical bills or case value exceed that amount, the other driver's insurance company would pay the first $25,000, and your Underinsured Motorist policy would cover the difference, up to the limits of your policy. However, most policies require that you reduce the amount recovered under your UIM policy by the amount you received from the liability insurer. A capable Indianapolis personal injury lawyer will help you maximize your claim in either scenario.
A Sad But True Example
The most disappointing case our firm handled involved a client who was paralyzed from the waist down as a passenger in a car crash. Her driver was at fault, but had no insurance. Our client also had no insurance. Because of this, three other law firms turned her down before Sevenish Law Firm took up her cause.
We tracked down another vehicle seen in the area of the crash, and convinced that driver's insurance company that we could make a reasonable case for fault. The insurer settled for $100,000, the limits of the car's liability coverage, knowing that a trial could result in a jury award in excess of $1 million because of our client's substantial and permanent injuries. If either the negligent driver had carried liability insurance or higher limits, or the client had carried Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist coverage, we could have collected far more for her - money she absolutely needs. As it turned out, we were still able to assist her with the purchase of a new home and a disabled-ready vehicle to keep her mobile, which is all she really wanted.
Advice to Motorcycle Riders:
Underinsured/Uninsured coverage is not required in Indiana. However, motorcycle accidents typically result in serious injuries and astronomical medical bills. Purchase as much uninsured driver and underinsurance coverage as you can to protect yourself and your family. We have found that most motorcycle injury claims involve inadequate insurance coverages on both sides. However, a capable Indiana auto accident lawyer will not only maximize your settlement but successfully minimize your payback obligations to health insurance and other liens in the event of a settlement less than what it should have been. Either way, you are usually much better off allowing a capable injury lawyer to handle these problematic issues - and you will still be financially ahead of where you would have been without a good lawyer, no matter what an adjuster or well-intended friend may tell you. Allow us the privilege to fully explain what we mean.
Contact personal injury lawyer Randy Sevenish for more information about insurance issues, or to arrange a free consultation to discuss your claim for damages in an accident. Call our toll-free Injury Hotline 24 hours a day at 800.278.9200.