Uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) insurance is important for everyone. However, it is particularly important for motorcyclists.
According to the Insurance Research Council, the uninsured motorist rate in Alabama is a staggeringly high 22 percent. This makes our state the sixth worst in the nation. When you are on the road, you can safely assume that at least one of every five drivers around you doesn’t have any car insurance whatsoever.
The number of underinsured drivers is likely even higher. The amount of insurance coverage that Alabama law requires is low:
- $25,000 for one person injured
- $50,000 for two or more people injured
- $25,000 for property damage
Under Alabama law, insurance companies are not required to pay more than the driver’s maximum policy limit. This means that if you are injured in a car accident and your medical bills cost you $50,000, the insurance company is only responsible for the first $25,000. The at-fault driver then becomes personally liable for the excess, $25,000.
Unfortunately, that money is very difficult to recover from an individual. Most people simply don’t have that kind of money immediately available, so you could be left waiting to be compensated.
This is why UM/UIM insurance is essential. But why is it particularly important for motorcyclists?
Riding a motorcycle is more dangerous than driving a car. There are ways to reduce the risks, such as wearing a helmet and protective gear. Still, motorcycles do not offer the safety that cars do: riders are exposed to the road and other vehicles, rather than situated behind a protective metal frame, and there are no airbags or seat belts to cushion them in a collision.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the fatality rate for motorcyclists is six times the rate for passenger car occupants. The injury rate is 0.7 percent higher.
Because motorcycle riders are more likely to be injured or killed, it is critical that they have UM/UIM insurance coverage. If they are involved in an accident, their injuries are more likely to be serious, resulting in medical bills above the legal minimum of insurance coverage.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault, Martinson & Beason, P.C. is here for you.
Our firm’s motorcycle accident attorneys are experienced in helping riders get the compensation they need to recover. Call us today for a free, confidential consultation. We’ll listen to your situation, let you know your options, and determine how we can help you.