Far too many drivers today either have no insurance or have only purchased the minimum coverage. With the rising costs of medical care, there may not be enough insurance to cover all the victim’s damages.
That is why it is so important to purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage. Without these coverages, you could be left paying for some of your damages out of your own pocket.
If you were injured in a crash caused by a negligent driver, you can find out about your legal options at zero cost or risk to you. Even if the driver was uninsured, we may be able to help. We have more than 40 years of experience and we offer a completely free initial consultation to answer your questions and discuss your situation.
At Friedman, Domiano & Smith, we are prepared to help if you have been injured in a crash. Our uninsured and underinsured motorist lawyers in Cleveland have been helping injury victims for years. We are ready to take on your claim and fight for maximum compensation on your behalf.
We get results with no upfront costs to you.
When Could I Have an Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Claim?
Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage provide additional sources of compensation under specific circumstances after a crash.
For instance, you may be able to file a claim against your UM/UIM coverage if:
- The driver fled the scene and police are unable to locate him or her.
- The at-fault driver in your crash has no insurance.
- The at-fault driver has insurance, but your damages exceed the policy limits.
Is UM/UIM Coverage Required in Ohio?
In Ohio, uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage is not required. It is optional. However, for a minimum investment, UM/UIM coverage will greatly benefit you if you get into a crash with an uninsured or underinsured motorist.
We strongly recommend drivers purchase this coverage, especially because the minimum required coverage is so low. In crashes where victims sustain serious injuries, it is highly likely that the total damages could exceed the at-fault party’s policy limits, even if that driver is insured. Liability insurance that you are required to carry protects you financially if you hurt someone else, uninsured/underinsured coverage protects you if someone hurts you.
In short, the investment is minimal, but it provides peace of mind and a considerable benefit for the price. You never know when you may get into a crash with an uninsured or underinsured driver, and crashes can cause significant injuries.
How Much UM/UIM Coverage Do I Need?
In Ohio, drivers who choose to purchase UM/UIM coverage must match their liability coverage limits.
This means that if you purchased the minimum required liability coverage of $25,000/$50,000/$25,000, your UM/UIM limits must match these amounts.
In this scenario, minimum UM/UIM coverage would provide you with the following limits:
- $25,000 per one person in a single incident
- $50,000 bodily injury coverage per accident
- $25,000 in uninsured motorist property damage (UMPD) per incident
Why Hire an Attorney for Help With a UM/UIM Claim?
Insurance companies never want to pay if they can find a way out of it. At the very least, they will look for ways to devalue your claim, paying you as little compensation as possible. Their interests are at odds with yours because their goal is to protect their bottom line.
At Friedman, Domiano & Smith, we help to level the legal playing field, and our goal is the same as yours. If we represent you, we work hard to obtain maximum compensation on your behalf. We also know how to handle insurance companies because we deal with them every day.
If one of our experienced uninsured or underinsured motorist lawyers in Cleveland represent you, we are prepared to:
- Fully investigate your crash
- Determine all liable parties and sources of compensation
- Seek maximum compensation
- Communicate with the liable insurer
- Keep you fully informed about the progress of your claim
- Protect your interests throughout the legal process
Our Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Attorneys Are Ready to Defend Your Case
Not only will we work hard to recover maximum compensation, but we are also prepared to go to court if necessary.
Why does this matter? It matters because not every attorney will represent a client’s case in a trial, and insurance companies know it. They know which attorneys will simply accept the best offer they can negotiate, and which attorneys will go to court. This often makes a significant difference in the final offer a liable insurance company may make during the negotiation process.
Will an Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Claim Raise My Premiums?
No, if you file a claim against your policy, it will not raise your premiums. Your insurer may later seek to recover the UM/UIM compensation paid to you from the at-fault party’s insurer, if available. This is called subrogation. However, using UM/UIM coverage does not increase your premiums.
Why Do So Many Drivers Fail to Purchase Car Insurance?
Purchasing car insurance is the law in Ohio. However, sometimes people drive without insurance. This may happen if a driver:
- Has a policy, but forgot to pay his or her insurance premium and the policy was cancelled
- Is struggling financially and failed to contact the insurer to make payment arrangements
- Has a suspended license and cannot get insurance
- Never had a license and is therefore not eligible to get insurance
You never know when you might encounter a driver in one of these situations and get into a crash. Purchasing UM/UIM coverage can prevent you from having to pay for your medical costs, lost wages and other damages in an uninsured/underinsured motorist collision.
How Do I Know if I Have Purchased Enough UM/UIM Coverage?
We always encourage buying the maximum benefit that you can afford within your budget. That said, your UM/UIM coverage cannot exceed your liability insurance limits.
If you cannot afford to purchase more than the minimum limits, you should still purchase the minimum. Minimum coverage is far better than having no coverage at all.
Call Our Firm to Discuss Your UM/UIM Claim Today
If you have been injured in any type of car crash, you already know the challenges of trying to deal with a claim. It can be overwhelming when you are also seeking medical care and trying to heal from your injuries. When the at-fault party is uninsured or underinsured, you may wonder if you can recover any compensation at all.
At Friedman, Domiano & Smith, we have extensive experience managing injury claims and a history of proven results. We diligently protect our client’s interests and work hard to uncover every source of available compensation.
Contact our law firm today for legal help you can trust. If we represent you, there is nothing for you to pay up front. Since we take all our injury cases on contingency, you only pay our fees if we win compensation for you.
Friedman, Domiano & Smith. We are ready to help: 216-621-0070