person in self-driving car

If you get hurt in a car crash, underinsured motorist coverage might be able to help you pay for expenses that the at-fault driver’s insurance policy does not. Navigating this process after an accident can be confusing, but do not worry. Our Westchester County car accident attorneys have plenty of experience handling cases like these and helping our clients get the compensation that they deserve.

How Can Underinsured Motorist Coverage Help Me?

Underinsured motorist coverage is there to cover any gaps in cases where another driver causes an accident and does not have enough coverage to reimburse you for all of your expenses. Insurance policies have limits. If someone is carrying a policy with only the coverage that is required by the state, then their policy may not have enough money to pay for the damage that they cause in a crash.

When you add underinsured motorist coverage to your policy, you can add as much as you would like to up until your bodily injury liability limit. This can give you thousands of dollars in extra insurance coverage. If the at-fault driver does not have a big enough policy to pay your bills, your own policy can help you.

Is Underinsured Motorist Coverage Mandatory in New York?

Despite its usefulness, underinsured motorist coverage is not mandatory in New York. You can add it to your insurance plan though, since most providers should offer it. You will end up paying more in premiums each month, so it’s important to study your options and figure out if the extra coverage is worthwhile to you. If you frequently drive with passengers and have a newer car that would cost a lot of money to replace, then underinsured motorist coverage is probably a good addition to your policy.

Does This Cover People in My Car?

We mentioned passengers earlier. That’s because your underinsured motorist coverage can also help your passengers pay medical bills if other types of coverage are exhausted. Policies have limits, and coming up against them when you still have a growing pile of medical bills can be stressful. This optional coverage gives New York drivers and their passengers an extra layer of protection in case of an accident.

Do I Still Need to Sue for Damages?

In some cases, you still will need to sue for damages. If the other driver has insurance, then their liability policy should cover the expenses of you and your passengers. Sometimes insurance companies do not want to give up that much money though. They certainly do not want to hand over a check for the entire policy limit, which could be a settlement for tens of thousands of dollars.

This is why we do not recommend that you take that first offer from another driver’s insurance company. A lawyer from our firm can evaluate your case and help you fight for maximum compensation. If you or your passengers still have bills to pay afterward, that is when your underinsured coverage can kick in and help.

Contact Our Law Firm Today

If you were hurt in a car accident, contact Hausman & Pendzick. We would be happy to schedule a free consultation and take a closer look at your case.