I recently represented a gentleman who got hit while riding his bike in a crosswalk. He was broadsided by a vehicle that was turning left and didn’t see him. He flew through the air and landed on the ground, incurring multiple injuries. He was taken to the hospital where he stayed three days. He then had to have several surgeries including shoulder surgery and knee surgery. He had lots of visible injuries and was basically laid up at home for six months.
His medical bills were approximately $75,000. Needless to say, the accident did not just affect him physically but also affected him emotionally and affected his daily life activities. Unfortunately, the other party had $100,000 in car insurance. That's not bad but it's not great when the case should be worth more than that. We were able to negotiate his medical bills and get him the best recovery we could. However, if he had additional coverage via "uninsured motorist"/"underinsured motorist", we would have had additional resources we could obtain.
For example, if he had a $300,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist policy, we could have pursued an additional $200,000 for him. You see, uninsured motorist coverage doesn’t just help you when the other party has zero insurance. It often helps you when the other side doesn’t have enough insurance. Luckily, the other party had at least $100,000 in insurance when they could easily have had $25,000 or $50,000 (basically it could have been worse). How much uninsured motorist should you get? I always tell clients to get as much as they can comfortably afford. You don’t want to go poor getting great insurance. By the same token, you want to make sure you have adequate insurance if you can comfortably afford it.
by Robert Mansour
Robert Mansour is a personal injury lawyer serving Santa Clarita, Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, Castaic and surrounding communities.