LawFuel.com – California Personal Injury Law Firms – Ashton and Price of Sacramento has written about Californian liability insurance issues and issues affecting those who have car accidents so far as insurance is concerned.
In California, liability insurance is required on all registered vehicles. The California Department of Motor Vehicles suspends vehicle registration when a vehicle owner does not provide proof of valid liability insurance. Unfortunately, this does not guarantee that all drivers on the road are properly insured.
If you are injured in a car accident with a driver who is uninsured (no insurance) or underinsured (not enough insurance), you may be able to pursue compensation through your own underinsured/uninsured motorist policy.
An uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) bodily injury liability policy will cover you when an uninsured or underinsured driver causes an accident. Policy limits for UM/UIM generally match your liability coverage.
UM/UIM coverage applies to family members, anyone to whom you give permission to drive your vehicle, and passengers in your vehicle. This portion of your policy also extends to provide coverage if you are stuck by a vehicle as a pedestrian or struck by a hit-and-run driver.
Why UM/UIM Coverage Is Important
Underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage can be crucial, because the minimum liability insurance requirement for passenger vehicles in California rarely covers the full extent of serious injuries. Minimum liability coverage is currently:
$15,000 for injury/death to one person
$30,000 for injury/death to more than one person
$5,000 for damage to property
Many times, the costs incurred after automobile accidents are much higher than the minimum liability drivers are required to carry. If it is verified that the vehicle or driver who caused a crash is underinsured, then your UIM policy kicks in. Your own insurance policy would pay for costs above the limit of the at-fault party’s liability insurance. The amount you receive is limited by the cap on your underinsured policy.
Under California law, liability insurance on one or more vehicles cannot be added together to determine the minimum coverage available to those injured in car accidents. The “anti-stacking” limitation on coverage generally means UM/UIM coverage remains cheaper than states that allow liability on multiple vehicles in the same family to be added together or stacked.
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