What happens if another driver hits you and he doesn’t have enough car insurance?

Beaver Falls lawyerSuppose you are forty years old, married, have two kids and a decent job. You have a fair amount of financial responsibilities that go with your status as husband and father. You have a house, your kids to take care of, retirement in the future, your kids’ educations down the road; there’s a lot you need to take care of.

So you’re driving home from work one day and a young guy loses control of his car, crosses into your lane, hits your car and you do not survive. What can your family expect financially for support after you’re gone? The auto insurance coverage that the negligent driver and the coverage that you have dictates what they can expect.

A young man probably will have minimal insurance. The state minimum in Pennsylvania is $15,000.00 in liability coverage. Many drivers maintain this minimal level of coverage. Others, thinking they are well covered, will have twenty-five, fifty, or even one hundred thousand dollars in coverage.

Contact attorney Matvey now at 724-709-7958

Whatever the coverage may be, that is all you can realistically expect from the other driver. You certainly can sue him and get a judgment against him for a far greater amount but it is likely that you will not collect on the judgment. He may have no assets he may have no way to pay the judgment.

If you were earning fifty or sixty thousand a year or even if you were earning twenty or thirty thousand a year, you can see how inadequate the coverage was for the driver who caused the accident, even if the other driver were covered up to one-hundred thousand dollars. What your family gets from the other driver for your loss is at best a year or two of lost earnings on which they now have to live.

How to protect yourself and your family

How do you protect yourself? Underinsured motorist coverage. Underinsured motorist insurance is exactly what it sounds like. You can buy underinsured motorists insurance with your own automobile policy that will add additional coverage to pay for your losses should the at-fault driver not have enough coverage to fully compensate you or your family.

For example, assume that the other driver has $25,000.00 in liability coverage. He causes an accident and you are injured. The value of your case, considering lost earnings, medical bills, and pain and suffering, add up to $100,000.00. With no underinsurance coverage, you’re only going to receive $25,000.00. If you have underinsurance coverage, his insurance company will pay the limits of his policy and your own insurance company will pay the remaining $75,000.00 for your injuries. You receive the benefit of your decision to adequately cover yourself with insurance.

The significance of the underisurance coverage is even greater should you not survive an accident. Your family will forever lose the income you would have earned to provide for them and even $100,000.00 in underinsurance coverage will not be enough to provide for them.

In buying auto insurance you should consider all ways of maximizing your underinsurance coverage. You can get as much as your insurance company will allow and you can take advantage of a concept called “stacking.” Ask your insurance agent about stacking of insurance if you own more than one car and he will explain how it works or you can call me for an explanation of the term.

Contact Attorney Matvey at 724-709-7958 to discuss your accident case.