Waiving Uninsured Car Coverage in Florida is a Risky Mistake
In Florida, there is a common misperception that is costing clients thousands, if not tens of thousands, of dollars. It is a misconception that clients do not need to purchase uninsured/underinsured (UM) motorist coverage due to Florida being a “no-fault state.” Here is more about this myth, and what you can do to stay safe and protected when you are driving a motor vehicle in Florida.
What Does Florida is a “No-Fault” State Mean?
To clarify, being a “no-fault” insurance state in Florida means that, in the event of a car accident, both parties initially turn to their auto insurance to pay for medical treatment. However, it is crucial to understand that the at-fault party remains responsible for your past and future medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, regardless of Florida’s “no-fault” status. In a recent public service announcement, Phil Snyder, a South Florida attorney with Lyons & Snyder, called out insurance agents who are failing to recommend solid car insurance coverage for their Florida clients to prevent problems in the event they get injured in a car accident.
Florida’s Unique Insurance Landscape
Here’s an astonishing fact: Florida is the only state in the entire country that does not require its drivers to purchase bodily injury (BI) coverage. Yes, you read that right—the only state. This creates a precarious situation for those involved in accidents caused by uninsured or underinsured drivers.
The Alarming Statistics … by our calculations:
- An estimated 33.33% of all drivers in South Florida do not purchase bodily injury (BI) coverage.
- Additionally, another 50% of drivers in South Florida have inadequate bodily injury (BI) coverage, making them underinsured.
Implications for Victims
If you are involved in a crash in South Florida that is not your fault, there is an 83.33% chance that you and your family will face significant difficulties if you do not carry uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage. This statistic alone should serve as a wake-up call to both drivers and insurance agents.
The Importance of Uninsured/Underinsured (UM) Motorist Coverage
Insurance agents, pay close attention: to protect your clients, it is imperative to encourage them to purchase uninsured/underinsured (UM) motorist coverage. Why? UM coverage safeguards your clients in the event that they are injured in a car accident that is not their fault. UM coverage stands in place of missing or inadequate bodily injury coverage and covers their damages, including past and future medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Debunking Common Misconceptions
Unfortunately, there are common but incorrect responses by insurance agents that perpetuate the misunderstanding surrounding UM coverage.
- “My client has an umbrella policy – they don’t need UM coverage.” This statement is entirely wrong. An umbrella policy protects you if you injure someone else, but it does not protect you or your family if you are injured by someone else.
- “My client has health insurance – they don’t need UM coverage.” Again, this is incorrect. Health insurance may cover past medical bills, but it does not account for future medical bills, lost wages, or pain and suffering.
Florida Car Accident Injury Attorneys
As personal injury attorneys, we often find ourselves having the same “no-fault” conversation with injured clients who received misguided advice from their insurance agents. The bottom line is this: UM coverage is crucial for protecting yourself and your loved ones in the event of an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. If you have any questions about this topic or need assistance, please feel free to reach out to Lyons & Snyder in South Florida. Remember, the right insurance coverage can make all the difference in protecting your financial well-being after an accident.
For help managing a personal injury claim with an insurance company or filing a personal injury lawsuit, contact the experienced attorneys at Lyons & Snyder for help at 954-462-8035 or contact us online. There is no fee until we recover compensation for you.