FAQ: Underinsured Motorists in Pittsburgh, PA
Frequently Asked Questions About Underinsured Motorist Accidents in Pennsylvania
Being injured in a motor vehicle accident is bad enough. When the other driver has no insurance or not enough insurance, the challenges increase. At Goodrich & Geist, P.C. in Pittsburgh, our Western Pennsylvania attorneys help injured drivers hurt in accidents with uninsured or underinsured motorists. Call now or fill out the online contact form to schedule a free consultation with one of our Pittsburgh auto accident lawyers.
We take pride in answering our clients’ questions as fully as possible. Some of the most frequently asked questions about underinsured and uninsured motorists in Pennsylvania are answered here.
Q. Is there a difference between an uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM)?
A. An uninsured driver is a motorist with no insurance at all. An underinsured motorist has insurance but does not have enough coverage to pay for all the damages caused.
Q. Why is being an underinsured or uninsured driver an issue in a car crash?
A. When both motorists have enough insurance, the two insurance companies usually reach an agreement about how much they will pay both drivers. When the other driver is underinsured or has no insurance at all, the motorist with insurance may have to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation. However, this approach might not result in enough compensation, as drivers without adequate insurance or any insurance at all may not have the resources to pay even if there is a judgement against them.
Q. Will I be able to get anything from the other driver if they are underinsured or uninsured?
A. In addition to filing a lawsuit against the other driver, people injured in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver may be able to obtain compensation from their own insurance carrier if they have coverage for accidents with uninsured or underinsured motorists.
Q. I have heard that drivers with stacked policies can obtain more compensation when they have an accident with an underinsured or uninsured driver. What is a stacked policy?
A. Pennsylvania allows motorists to have multiple UM or UIM policies. You can have coverage for multiple vehicles on one policy or you can have multiple policies for one vehicle. This allows you to collect more than the policy limit on a single policy if you are in an accident with a motorist who lacks adequate insurance or who has no insurance at all.
Q. If I file a claim with my insurance company after an accident with an underinsured or uninsured motorist, will my premiums increase?
A. Your premiums should not increase after a UIM or UM claim if the other driver’s negligence caused the crash.
Q. Why do I need a lawyer after a Pennsylvania uninsured or underinsured motorist crash?
A. Obtaining all the compensation you need after a UIM or UM accident is more complicated than trying to obtain benefits after an accident where everyone is adequately insured. An attorney who knows how to interpret insurance policies and determine the extent of coverage can be a great asset when trying to get full compensation for all your losses and damages stemming from a Pittsburgh auto accident. One of the most important reasons to have a lawyer for a UM or UIM claim is that they can help you avoid mistakes that could reduce the value of your accident claim.