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Why Should Everyone in Washington State Have UIM (Uninsured Motorist Coverage)?

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When it comes to safeguarding your financial stability and well-being after a vehicle accident, Uninsured Motorist (UIM) coverage is a crucial consideration. Particularly in Washington, where the State’s minimum liability limits may not be sufficient to cover all expenses resulting from an accident, UIM steps in to provide the necessary financial support. With decades of experience, Washington Law Center strongly recommends UIM insurance to protect yourself, your family, and passengers from the economic impact of accidents involving underinsured or uninsured drivers.

Understanding UIM Insurance

UIM, short for Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage, is designed to compensate individuals in situations where the at-fault driver lacks adequate insurance to cover your losses. This insurance is particularly significant due to several factors:

  1. High Costs of Medical Care:

    A single trip to the hospital following an accident can easily exceed the typical minimum liability coverage of $25,000 in Washington. UIM insurance helps cover these high costs, ensuring you are not left financially strained.

  2. Increasing Number of Underinsured Drivers:

    More drivers are opting only for the minimum liability insurance required by law, which often is not enough to cover all damages and medical expenses incurred in an accident.

  3. Increasing Number of Uninsured Drivers:

    Approximately one in seven drivers on the road do not carry insurance. This in and of itself is concerning, but when you consider the fact that uninsured drivers, for a variety of reasons, may drive with less caution, the likelihood of being injured by a driver without insurance is significant. 

  4. Protection in Multiple Scenarios:

    UIM coverage is not just for accidents involving two vehicles. It also provides coverage in hit-and-run incidents and can extend to protect you if you are on a bicycle or walking as a pedestrian when struck by a vehicle.

Benefits of Having Uninsured Motorist Coverage

  • Financial Security:

    UIM insurance acts as a financial safety net that steps in where at-fault drivers’ insurance is lacking.

  • Broad Application:

    UIM coverage is versatile, extending protection to various situations including multi-vehicle accidents and accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists.

  • Cost-Effective:

    Adding Uninsured Motorist Coverage to your existing policy is generally inexpensive compared to the significant coverage it provides. Starting with a policy limit of $100,000 is advisable for substantial protection.

  • Legal Support:

    In the absence of sufficient coverage from the at-fault party, securing compensation through legal means can be challenging, particularly if the other party has limited assets. UIM insurance alleviates this burden by providing a more straightforward path to receiving the compensation you deserve.

 

Common Misconceptions and Overlooked Facts of UIM Insurance

  • Misunderstanding Coverage:

    Many individuals decline UIM coverage to reduce their premium costs, not realizing the extent of protection it offers. This decision can lead to significant financial and emotional stress in the event of an accident.

  • Assumption of Full Coverage:

    It is a common mistake to assume that having basic auto insurance equates to full coverage. Without UIM, you may find yourself unprotected against drivers with insufficient or no insurance.

How to Ensure Adequate UIM Protection

  1. Review Your Policy:

    Regularly review your insurance policy details to confirm that you have adequate UIM coverage. Adjust your coverage limits based on your financial situation and risk exposure.

  2. Consult with Professionals:

    Engage with your insurance broker, or an experienced attorney from Washington Law Center, to understand the nuances of UIM coverage and how it can be tailored to your needs.

  3. Perform an Individual Analysis:

    Consider your daily commute, the driving habits of those in your household, and the financial implications of potential accidents to determine the appropriate level of UIM insurance.

 

If you currently lack UIM coverage or have insufficient limits, now is the time to act. Contact your insurance provider to discuss adding or adjusting your UIM coverage. For personalized advice and assistance in understanding the full benefits and implications of UIM insurance, reach out to the experts at Washington Law Center. Protecting yourself and your family from the unforeseen consequences of an accident is not just a precaution—it is a necessity.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Ashton Dennis

Partner
Personal Injury Attorney

Ashton Dennis is a litigation and trial attorney at Washington Law Center focused on representing individuals and families who have suffered a serious personal injury or wrongful death. He was named one of the “Top 40 Under 40” by the National Trial Lawyers of Washington State and one of the “Premier 100” trial attorneys by the American Academy of Trial Lawyers in Washington. Click here to learn more about Ashton.

Personal Injury Attorney - Ashton Dennis - Tacoma, WA - Washington Law Center

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