Understanding Your Rights After an Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Accident

Vehicle accidents, no matter how mild, are stressful events that have the potential to completely change your life. When you’re struggling to cope with painful injuries, expensive treatments, and lost income, the last thing you want to worry about is the guilty party’s insurance coverage–or lack thereof. 

There are underinsured and uninsured motorists (UM/UIM) on roads all around the country. This can become a big issue whenever they cause an accident, as they are usually not able to cover the costs of victims’ injuries due to their limited or nonexistent coverage. Fortunately for accident victims, there are laws concerning both of these classifications. Here, we will take a closer look into UM and UIM laws and how they are applied. 

Insurance is Required Under Nevada Law

Across the U.S., approximately one in seven motorists is uninsured. As far as Nevada is concerned, a local news report asserts that the state ranks in the 15th percentile of uninsured drivers, which is actually pretty good. However, there certainly are a multitude of uninsured drivers on state roads, especially those travelling through or visiting. 

The state has attempted to curb the number of uninsured motorists by requiring every licensed driver to carry some form of insurance. In addition, there is also a secondary validation process in place through the Department of Motor Vehicles to double-check that every vehicle registered in the state has at least minimal coverage. Any gaps in coverage results in fines. This is an effective system for the most part, however some inevitably slip through the cracks by simply driving unregistered vehicles. 

What About Underinsured Drivers?

It’s easy to understand the risks of uninsured drivers, but most people aren’t familiar with what an “underinsured” driver actually is. Essentially, it depends on what level of coverage each state requires– no two states have the same insurance regulations. In that sense, underinsured drivers could also be referred to as “minimally covered drivers,” as they usually have the cheapest coverage required for that jurisdiction. Most of the time, an underinsured motorist will not have enough insurance to cover a claimant’s bodily injuries. 

If you are injured by an underinsured motorist and their policy limits are not enough to cover your expenses, then the UIM coverage from your own policy would kick in to help pick up the difference. Under Nevada law, UM and UIM coverages are sold together as a package, however they will only cover bodily injuries, not property damages. If your vehicle was severely damaged and the defendant’s insurance won’t cover it, you may be forced to pay for your own repairs. 

For UM/ UIM Cases, Always Hire an Attorney

Given the fact that most of us pay significant rates every month, we generally like to believe that our insurance companies have our best interests at heart. However, after years of negotiating and settling claims, we know that that is simply not always the case. Basically, when you end up in a UM/ UIM situation, your insurer has to take the place of the guilty party (because no one else can or will pay). Insurance companies don’t want to pay for anyone’s bills, including their policyholders,’ which is why they fight UM/ UIM claims so adamantly. 

That is why you should always retain an experienced UM/ UIM attorney, so that someone is actually fighting on behalf of your personal interests. They will analyze your policy, the defendant’s policy (or lack thereof), and the insurance company’s practices to ensure that eligible policyholders get the coverage that they should have had to begin with. 

Connect With Nevada UM/ UIM Attorneys 

When you need help getting coverage for injuries that were caused by uninsured or underinsured motorists, contact the trusted Nevada UM/ UIM attorneys at Van Law Firm right away to see what your case may potentially be worth with a free consultation. We’ve helped countless accident victims get the coverage and treatment they so rightly deserved, and we’re always looking to expand the VLF family. Call (702) 529-1011 today to learn more about our dedication to excellence.