I want to harp on this subject again.
In 2017, Alabama was ranked #6 in the country in the number of uninsured drivers. Uninsured drivers are 34% more likely to cause an accident.
In Alabama, drivers are required to carry a $25,000/$50,000/$25,000 policy. What that means is that all drivers need to carry comprehensive coverages of $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident (in the aggregate) and $25,000 in property coverage. The state also mandates that each driver carry a minimum of $25,000 per person and $50,000 in the aggregate relating to uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage, that would help protect you, as the insured, in the event the at-fault party either didn’t have any insurance or was not adequately insured to cover the damages of the accident. There is a caveat regarding the uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage though… you, the insured, can expressly waive this coverage.
I have seen reputable agents get their insureds to waive this coverage all under the guise of saving the insured money on his premium. In reality, this is a ruse. While waiving UM/UIM coverage will save you, the insured, a little money, it is definitely not in your best interest to do so.
We just mentioned the number of uninsured drivers in Alabama. That doesn’t even begin to mention the number of folks who are under-insured. Did you know that a ordinary rear-end collision can cause in excess of $15,000 just in medical expenses? That doesn’t even take into account lost wages, pain and suffering, etc. So, you can see that the state minimum requirement ($25,000 per person) may not be enough to even compensate the “average” car wreck victim. That is where UM/UIM coverage comes in. This coverage under your policy would then step into the shoes of the at-fault party and would compensate you for any additional damages. It is vital to carry this coverage.
I would go so far to say that if you work, have dependents or a spouse, and own any property, you need to increase your coverages dramatically to a minimum of $100,000 per person, $300,000 in the aggregate and $100,000 in property damage. I would strongly encourage your UM/UIM coverages to mimic your liability coverages. After all, you are a safe driver, or let’s presume as such. Why would you afford the world at large better coverage than you would yourself? Your liability covers the world against your negligence. UM/UIM covers you in case of the world’s negligence. You see?
And, let’s go back to my earlier statement about witnessing reputable companies and agents getting their insureds to waive UM/UIM under their policy all in the interest of saving money on the premium. Remember, I said that was a farce. It is! Waiving UM/UIM coverage on your policy may save you $10 on the premium. Is that worth it?!?! Did you know there are better ways to save money on the premium? Buckle up, have a safe driving history, have a good credit score, be able to buy a home, etc. Did you know that you can waive little things like rental car coverage? That would likely save you much more on the premium, and would not be so detrimental in the event you were severely injured in an accident at the hands of some negligent person.
So, if your agent has tried to get you to waive this coverage, fire him. Fire him now. No quality agent should do this. If you have good credit, assets, etc., and have $100,00/$300,000 policy, and your agent has you a policy that only provides $25,000/$50,000 in UM/UIM, then I would seriously question whether that agent has you in the best policy. In my humble opinion, of course, that would show me that your agent either doesn’t know insurance or doesn’t care about you. Only if you chose this policy on your own, after being duly informed of all relevant facts, and yet you still chose this horrible coverage, well then… that’s your fault, and not the fault of the agent.
Make sure you and your loved ones are adequately protected. The whole point of insurance is to protect you. There are several ways to get your premium down. Don’t sacrifice coverage though. Call me and I’m happy to discuss. I know good, quality agents in Alabama, who only write good policies that adequately cover their folks.
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