Written on Mar 3, 2015 10:00:00 AM
What Does my Insurance Cover if I'm a Victim of a DUI Accident?
One moment you’re driving, and the next you’re in a whirlwind of trouble – completely blind-sided – and your body is in shock. This is often what happens to victims who are hit by drunk drivers. Regardless of the circumstances, being in a DUI accident can turn your world upside-down, and leave you scared and confused.
On top of your injuries, mental anguish, and the effects on your enjoyment of life, you’re expected to deal with money and insurance coverage. Let a compassionate, experienced DUI accident attorney handle the barrage of paperwork and insurance phone calls for you, because frankly, you have enough to worry about.
The question still remains: what exactly does my insurance cover as the victim of a DUI accident? You may be surprised by your possible eligibility for reward compensation based on your accident case.
Here are some helpful pointers for you to peruse that shed light on this ever-important question.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
All Florida automobile insurance policies are required to carry Personal Injury Protection, or PIP. Chances are, if you have purchased an insurance policy (unless it’s a policy that was issued in another state), you have PIP. Any injuries incurred as a result of your accident are covered 80% by PIP up to $10,000.00.
You are entitled to this coverage from the moment you are in an accident. This includes medical fees and coverage, regardless of whether they are short- or long-term.
It’s extremely important you seek the counsel of an attorney to discern all the benefits you’re able to receive with PIP. This includes compensation for:
- Lost wages
- Childcare required during medical treatment
A percentage is reimbursed to you upon submitting this to your insurance company. You can find more information about PIP and what it covers here.
No matter what, there’s inevitably going to be property damage where auto accidents are concerned, whether it’s to a vehicle or otherwise. Oftentimes, these damages are severe, and require immediate attention and repairs. In addition to PIP, all Florida auto insurance policies are required to have Property Damage (PD) coverage (minimum $10,000.00).
While you may also pursue recovery of your vehicle from the opposing insurance company, going through your own company has the benefit of contractual obligation. Your own insurance agency is invested to serve you. The only setback is that you will have to pay your PD deductible up-front (this goes into your compensation to be made whole again).
You have a right to recover the value of your car right before impact. However, insurance companies aren’t known for paying out what is fair, so let an attorney help you get what you deserve for your vehicle. After all, you are going through enough hardship for an accident that wasn’t even your fault.
Uninsured motorist coverage is invaluable to have, and can be a make-or-break asset for your case. Arguably, UM coverage is the most important auto insurance coverage you can purchase. If the opposing party does not have valid insurance, you may pursue your case through your own insurance company and receive compensation for your injuries.
Think of UM as proxy coverage in the event that the other party does not have auto insurance; a fallback, and an extra security measure to protect yourself and your loved ones that may be in the vehicle with you. Most policies don’t have this by default, so you need to manually add it on to your policy or talk to your insurance representative to ensure proper coverage is awarded. To find out more about UM and its importance, click here.
I Have Full Coverage, so I’m Fine, Right?
Many people unintentionally believe they have what’s called “full coverage” on their vehicles. In truth, there is no such thing as full coverage. There are requirements in Florida on auto insurance policies, and oftentimes having this coverage on your policy gets misconstrued as having “full coverage.” If you are looking for additional coverage on your policy, think about adding some of these insurance coverages (if you haven’t already):
- Uninsured Motorist
- Gap insurance
- Medical Payments Coverage
Make sure when you are purchasing insurance that all of your options are listed and told to you; in fact, doing your own research about everything that’s available in terms of coverage would be wise. Let an attorney look over your auto insurance policy to help your coverage decision, and find a policy that fits right for you and your family. That way you know exactly what you will be covered for as a victim in a DUI accident.
It’s always a good idea to let an experienced and compassionate attorney hear your story, and help educate you on your options and rights to get what you deserve for you and your loved ones.