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The Hidden Lifeline in Your Auto Insurance: Why You Need SUM Coverage for Fair Compensation Following a Car Accident

Car accident

Imagine you're driving home after a long day. Suddenly, out of nowhere, another car slams into you. The crash leaves you with injuries, medical bills, and a damaged car.

You discover that the driver who hit you has minimal car insurance coverage, barely enough to cover the basic costs of your damages. You're left wondering how you'll manage the mounting expenses and lost wages.

This nightmare scenario is all too real for many drivers. Drivers in New York MUST have car insurance to pay for accidents they may cause that injures other people. Despite this requirement, some people buy policies with insufficient policies (up to $25,000). Others choose to drive with no insurance coverage at all.

Many people are unaware of a hidden lifeline called Supplemental Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage that can be very helpful. Despite its importance, many insurers don’t emphasize this crucial insurance option. SUM coverage is vital for ensuring you receive fair compensation when you need it most. So, what exactly is SUM coverage, and how does it work?

Understanding SUM Insurance Coverage

SUM, which stands for Supplemental Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage, provides protection if you are injured in an accident caused by a driver who either has no insurance (uninsured) or insufficient insurance (underinsured).

Typical car insurance protects you from paying out-of-pocket for injuries suffered by others in an accident caused by you. If a driver hits your car and injures you because they were not paying attention, their insurance might cover your injuries.

Their insurance could potentially compensate you for any harm caused by the accident. This means that you may not have to pay for medical expenses out of pocket.

Contacting their insurance company to file a claim for your injuries is important.

If that driver has a $100,000 policy, you may collect up to that amount from their policy for your injuries. That driver doesn’t personally pay that money; it comes from their insurance company.

But what if that driver only has a $25,000 policy (or no policy at all) and your injuries are worth $90,000? That’s where SUM insurance comes into play.

SUM coverage is car insurance coverage you purchase from YOUR insurance company. This coverage adds to the money available to compensate you for your injuries. If the driver who hits you doesn't have enough insurance, your SUM coverage can help pay for your injuries.

This coverage will cover costs that exceed what the other driver's insurance covers. With SUM, your insurance policy adds to the available amount of money for you.

Unfortunately, when you purchase car insurance for yourself, many insurance companies don’t emphasize this type of coverage since it results in the insurance company paying for your injuries, as opposed to the insurance company of the driver who hit you (and caused the accident).

Options for SUM Coverage

New York State passed a law that requires insurance companies to offer SUM coverage with a minimum of $25,000 per person for injuries suffered. Given that the cost of serious injuries can easily surpass these limits, it is advisable to buy higher coverage amounts from your insurance company for yourself. We strongly advise you to purchase as much of this insurance as you can afford, since it protects you!

Remember, your SUM coverage cannot be more than the bodily injury liability coverage on your policy. (That’s coverage that applies when you’re the one at fault for the accident). For instance, if you want to increase your SUM coverage to $100,000, your bodily injury liability coverage (when you cause the accident) must also be at least $100,000.

Seeking Professional Advice

If you’ve been injured in an accident, it’s essential to contact a trusted personal injury attorney who understands the nuances of your coverage. Connect with us for a free consultation by calling 800-675-8556.

Make sure you have enough SUM coverage. This will protect and compensate you in case of an accident with an underinsured driver. It will ensure that you have full coverage and fair compensation. Don't risk being unprotected in an accident with a driver who lacks sufficient insurance.

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