What is Uninsured Motorist Insurance Coverage and Why Do You Need It?
Uninsured Motorist Coverage protects responsible drivers, who carry insurance, against those who (for whatever reason) may not have insurance or only have the state minimum required insurance at the time of an accident.
If an insured driver is involved in a no-fault accident with an individual who is uninsured , the insured driver is stuck with the bills incurred from the accident that was not their fault! It is especially important for drivers to protect themselves against those that may not have auto insurance.
MJM Insurance of Fenton Agents encourage our clients to carry at least the Uninsured Motorist Coverage minimum, if not more depending on your circumstances. We want the best protection for our clients!
Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage is now required by Law. An insurance company cannot issue a contract of automobile liability coverage in Missouri without including Uninsured Motorist Coverage on the policy.
Missouri Auto Insurance TIP: It is also a good idea to have the same limits for Uninsured Motorist Coverage as you have for bodily injury liability. THIS COVERAGE IS FOR YOU. It pays for your injuries and damage to your car, if another person is at fault and has no or not enough libility insurance coverage.
Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage is designed to help drivers pay for the bills associated with a crash that was caused by another person who either doesn’t have auto insurance or has a policy with liability limits that are too low to cover costs associated with a covered loss. What is your worth? If you are not properly covered you could suffer great financial loss.
A FREE MISSOURI AUTO INSURANCE RISK ASSESSMENT can help. As part of our commitment to our clients, MJM Insurance of Fenton provides a free risk assessment to ensure the right protection is in place for you and your family. We look at your overall worth, what assets you have that could be at risk, and how your family could be affected by a financial loss.
The coverage limits for Uninsured Motorist Coverage protection can range from $20,000 to $1 million. Our agents consider a number of factors, including how much your car is worth, what kind of medical insurance you carry, and whether you have access to short- and long-term disability protection to ensure you don’t lose out on wages if you’re unable to work.
Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage offers coverage for bodily injury and can offer coverage for damages to your car. In addition to injuries to the driver, the bodily injury portion of Uninsured Motorist Coverage may also cover injuries to your passengers or family members who are driving the vehicle at the time of such a crash. All the coverages in your auto policy apply when you are driving, but they also apply when other people are driving your vehicle. The coverages are actually for the car, not the person. NOTE: If someone is going to be a regular user of your car, that person’s name needs to be added to the policy.
Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage will also pay for damages to a vehicle that was parked and not occupied when the at fault party is unknown. This type damage (sometimes called “hit and run” accidents) often occur in parking lots and with vehicles parked along a street curb. Your auto uninsured motorist coverage will pay for these “hit and run” damages less a state wide deductible.
Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage is especially important for Motorcycle drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a motorcycle rider is 35 times more likely to suffer serious injury or death from an accident than occupants in a passenger car. The NHTSA also states that the motorcyclist is rarely at fault when involved in an accident. If you are in a motorcycle accident and the other party has no or insufficient liability insurance, you can face significant costs for an accident you didn’t cause.
In summary, Missouri Auto Insurance Uninsured Motorist Coverage pays for the costs associated with your injuries when the at-fault driver has no insurance at all. Underinsured motorist coverage covers the gap between what the at-fault driver’s policy pays and your medical expenses when that driver has insufficient insurance.
For those uninsured , the plea of guilty WILL RESULT in the entry of a conviction on a driving offense. Convictions for offenses will be sent to the Department of Public Safety for entry on your driving record, or to the Department of Natural Resources, and MAY RESULT in the loss of your license by those agencies.
In 2014, the Insurance Research Council News published an article in The Insurance Journal discussing the cost of uninsured motorist claims has risen dramatically in the past decade. Missouri law prohibits an uninsured driver, who is the owner of the vehicle or a driver operating a vehicle with or without permission who is uninsured, from collecting for non-economic damages in a civil action against an insured motorist alleged to be at fault for an accident. However, the limitation does not apply to passengers in an uninsured driver’s vehicle and does not limit the recovery of benefits provided or economic losses. Furthermore, recovery of non-economic damages in instances where an insured driver who is at fault because of operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol will still be allowed under the new law.
Filing an Accident Report
Statutory reference: Section 303.040, states you must report accidents that happen in Missouri to the Driver License Bureau if:
- The accident happened less than one year ago,
- The accident involved an uninsured motorist, AND
- The accident caused property damage costing more than $500, or someone was injured or killed.
NOTE: If the accident did not cause $500 in property damage or personal injury or death, you may still file an accident report, if there was an uninsured motorist involved.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, the law reads as follows:
- An uninsured motorist shall waive the ability to have a cause of action or otherwise collect for non-economic loss against a person who is in compliance with the financial responsibility laws of this chapter due to a motor vehicle accident in which the insured driver is alleged to be at fault. For purposes of this section, the term “uninsured motorist” shall include:
(i) An uninsured driver who is the owner of the vehicle;
(ii) An uninsured permissive driver of the vehicle; and
(iii) Any uninsured no permissive driver.
Such waiver shall not apply if it can be proven that the accident was caused, in whole or in part, by a tort-feasor who operated a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or who is convicted of involuntary manslaughter under subdivision (2) of subsection 1 of section 565.024, or assault in the second degree under subdivision (4) of subsection 1 of section 565.060.
- The provisions of this section shall not apply to an uninsured motorist whose immediately previous insurance policy meeting the requirements of section 303.190 was terminated or non-renewed for failure to pay the premium, unless notice of termination or nonrenewal for failure to pay such premium was provided by such insurer at least six months prior to the time of the accident.
- In an action against a person who is in compliance with the financial responsibility laws prescribed by this chapter by a person deemed to have waived recovery under subsection 1 of this section:
(i) Any award in favor of such person shall be reduced by an amount equal to the portion of the award representing compensation for non-economic losses;
(ii) The trier of fact shall not be informed, directly or indirectly, of such waiver or of its effect on the total amount of such person’s recovery.
- Nothing in this section shall be construed to preclude recovery against an alleged tort-feasor of benefits provided or economic loss coverage.
- Passengers in the uninsured motor vehicle are not subject to such recovery limitation.
If you have had an accident with an uninsured motorist call your insurance agent and contact the Missouri Department of Revenue Driver’s License Bureau at (573) 751-7195. The Missouri Department of Revenue enforces the financial responsibility laws in Missouri. If you were injured, you will want to report the loss under your Uninsured Motorist Coverage with your agent.
Our agents are here to help you through the claims process! Call for your free assessment (636) 343-5000.