If the person has only minimum Illinois coverage then the most their insurance will pay you for your injuries and losses is $20,000.
Despite what many people think, there isn’t an endless stream of settlement money available to you if a negligent driver hits you and sends you to the hospital. What you can do after that depends on the choices you made when you purchased your own insurance.
Whom does underinsurance coverage pay?
If you are in an accident and the other driver was at fault but has no insurance, your uninsured/underinsured coverage is the insurance that will pay for your injuries and losses up to the amount of your policy. In case you missed that, underinsurance coverage is insurance on YOU if the negligent party doesn’t have enough insurance to cover you. If you only purchased the minimums, that amount would be $20k for you or $40k if others in your car were injured. However, if you wisely spent the extra few dollars per month to have adequate coverage, say $250,000/$500,000 then that money would be available to cover your injuries and losses.
A typical case without adequate underinsurance coverage
A good example of inadequate underinsured coverage would be a young person who buys only the minimums ($20k/$40k) on both liability and underinsured coverage for his or her motorcycle. (To save money, of course) Your motorcycle accident occurs when a texting driver didn’t see you. Your injuries were typical for a serious motorcycle accident, leaving you with injuries and losses of over $150,000. The driver of the car only carries the minimum insurance. (Same as you)
This means that your negotiations with the other driver’s insurance company will be over how much of the $20,000 they are going to give you. There is no other money to fight over logistically. That leaves you $130,000 short. However, if you had $250,000/$500,000 underinsurance coverage or more, our negotiations for your settlement would be with your insurance company for your share of your $250,000 underinsured coverage.
How to get the compensation you deserve
Liability insurance laws requiring minimum coverage are good idea except that they often give people a false idea of the cost of a serious accident. For a few dollars more per month, you can have the insurance coverage you need.
Even though you paid the premiums on your underinsured coverage, you still may have to fight and negotiate to receive the compensation you need from your insurance company. Just because they are your insurance company doesn’t mean they won’t act like an insurance company when it comes to paying you.
You should still give Willens Law Firm a call after your accident. We can sort through the insurance money available to you and help you negotiate with your insurance company. Your liability underinsured coverage is there to cover your medical bills, lost income, rehabilitation, and even pain and suffering. We help you to receive it.