Not all of America’s drivers may know about this kind of insurance, but underinsured motorist coverage is becoming an essential part of protecting a driver’s investment in a vehicle and in limiting bodily injury liability. Underinsured motorist coverage kicks in on a claim when the at-fault driver did not have sufficient insurance coverage to pay out to victims of an accident. Although states generally set standards for underinsured motorist coverage, there are ways for a driver to find more affordable rates for this kind of insurance, and use knowledge about an underinsured motorist policy to negotiate with insurers.
When you’re talking to your insurer about an underinsured motorist policy, it’s helpful to know how companies assess this kind of risk. Organizations like the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators maintain good online sites that help show the factors in measuring underinsured motorist issues, with equations involving numbers of underinsured motorists and the numbers of underinsured vehicles on the road. Drivers can sometimes use this knowledge to better negotiate a rate correlation or coverage rate.
Some states now require underinsured motorist coverage, as well as a similar policy type called uninsured motorist coverage (these two are collectively abbreviated UM/UIM) that covers drivers operating with no insurance at all. Obviously, driving without insurance is illegal, but that doesn’t stop a whole lot of motorists who feel that they can’t afford the cost of insuring themselves and their vehicles. If you know what your state generally requires, you can find that minimum coverage, bringing your policy rates down.
If UM/UIM fees are boosting your premium rates, take a look at other extras like roadside assistance, rental reimbursement or comprehensive coverage that you may be able to either temporarily or permanently remove to bring your insurance rates back down. You can always find a ride if you’re stranded, but for compensation from an accident, you’ll need the appropriate insurance.
Another way to get fair premium rates is by using deductibles to lower the amount that you pay every month. If you feel that underinsured motorist coverage or any other element of your policy is pushing your premiums too high, think about increasing a deductible to offset the cost.
Each auto insurance company assesses risk differently, and each will give you a final quote for a policy that includes underinsured motorist coverage. Get a variety of price quotes from both small and national companies, and choose the one that best fits your budget.
The above are some ways to possibly capitalize on more knowledge about underinsured motorist coverage, so that you are not simply blindsided at deal time and distracted into signing on for high premium rates.