Clients who have been seriously injured in an accident often want to know how much insurance the vehicle that hit them was carrying. However, this question is usually not nearly as important as how much insurance you have on your own car. Or, if you live with a family member, how much insurance they have on their car? How much insurance was on the car you were riding in, or that you may have borrowed from someone else?
These questions are important because many injured clients do not understand that a type of insurance coverage known as underinsured motorist coverage will cover their accident even if they’re riding in a different car at the time of injury. In addition, we can often stack underinsured coverage on your own automobile even if it was parked at home at the time of the accident. We have also been successful in stacking underinsured coverage on automobiles owned by other family members who you live with. This would include parents who are divorced and living in separate households. We have even stacked the underinsured coverage on both parents’ policies even when neither vehicle was involved in the accident.
A good example would be if you are hit by a driver who was Carrying only $50,000 in insurance coverage on their vehicle. If you have a serious back injury and the value of the case is $500,000, then you have been injured by an under-insured driver whose insurance is inadequate to cover your injury. If at the time of the accident you were riding with a friend or neighbor, we can collect the underinsured coverage on their vehicle which could mean an additional hundred thousand dollars. We can Then turn to the underinsured coverage on your own vehicle parked in your garage and collect as much as another $100,000. If The injured party in your family is a minor, and his or her parents are divorced, we can also stack the underinsured coverage on each parents’ insurance if the minor child spends some time at each home. This is possible because the law recognizes that children of divorced parents have two residences.
So when we meet with clients, we always asked them to bring sheets showing their policy limits for every vehicle they own, every vehicle they were riding in, and every vehicle owned by a parent or other relative with whom they live.
Here at Macfarlane Legal works, we never leave insurance coverage on the table. We investigate all the potential policies that might apply to the accident. If a law firm misses one of these policies, you might not ever find out. The case could be settled, dismissed, and the attorney would likely be hesitant to admit that they missed an extra hundred thousand dollars on your own under-insured policy.
We know the questions to ask to get all of the available insurance coverage. We also know how to protect the money that is collected so that it is available for you. See our other articles which talk about how your health insurance company can try to take your settlement from you.