Not everyone on the road carries auto liability insurance. When an uninsured driver gets into an accident with another vehicle and causes injury to a motorist or passengers, it seemingly leaves the injured parties to cover the medical costs out of their own pockets. However, uninsured motorist coverage provides a way for injured North Carolina drivers to receive compensation without burning through their own finances.
NerdWallet explains that uninsured motorist coverage pays out in the event you are hurt by a party that does not have insurance. Uninsured policies cover medical bills and can also compensate crash victims for damages such as pain and suffering or lost wages. Coverage can include yourself as a driver or passengers that were riding with you at the time of the accident.
Sometimes uninsured motorist coverage is referred to as uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage, to distinguish it from uninsured motorist property damage coverage. This is because some uninsured coverage only compensates for medical bills and not for property damage committed by an uninsured driver. In these cases, a person has to buy coverage separately to cover damage done to physical property.
Some uninsured motorist coverage also allows the policyholder to receive compensation in the event an at-fault driver does have some coverage but not enough to cover the costs arising from an accident. These drivers are known as underinsured drivers. Underinsured coverage makes up the difference when the underinsured driver can only pay partially for medical bills or physical damages.
Many states actually do not require a person to carry uninsured motorist coverage. Only 18 states and the District of Colombia mandate that drivers carry some form of uninsured coverage. North Carolina is one of those states. The North Carolina DMV website explains that state law G.S. 20-279.21 requires drivers to carry uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.
Carrying uninsured motorist coverage can assist injured motorists and passengers who are hurt by an uninsured driver. However, there is no guarantee that an insurer will cover the full amount of your medical costs. In such instances, frustrated policyholders may consider going to an auto insurance attorney to help secure a fair amount for their damages.