Uninsured Motorist & Underinsured Motorist Insurance Benefits

In the typical motor vehicle accident case, Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage applies if the at-fault driver has no insurance. Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage will apply if the at-fault driver's insurance coverage is insufficient to cover all damages. But did you know that an injured pedestrian is likely to receive UM or UIM coverage under the pedestrian's own auto policy if the other driver has no insurance (or has insufficient insurance)? Yes, it's true. So if you were hit by a car while a pedestrian, and you have your own auto liability insurance, you should probably notify your carrier of the accident.

UIM coverage for your automobile

You should also know that UIM coverage is a floating layer of coverage; meaning that it is coverage in addition to the coverage held by the at-fault driver. Washington law states that UM/UIM coverage must be offered in the same amount as a driver's liability coverage unless rejected by the insured in writing. If there are multiple policies, then the separate UM/UIM coverage amounts may be stackable unless the policy specifically excludes stacking coverage between separate policies. You should consult an attorney to make this determination. So if, while a pedestrian, you were injured by a motorist, your UIM coverage will be a floating layer of coverage on top of the at-fault motorist's layer of auto insurance coverage.

There are different types of insurance policies or types of coverage that may be held by the at-fault party. These coverage types are extremely important because they may often determine whether a personal injury case can be successfully pursued or not.

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