Why Do You Need Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Georgia?
As the economy in the United States has declined in the last few years, unemployment rates have risen sharply, and, with more people without a job, the number of uninsured drivers has risen, too. In a tight economy, people are often forced to make very tough decisions about trimming already strained budgets. Unfortunately, car insurance may seem like an easy way to cut back, but if you look a little more closely, cutting back can be illegal and costly. It is estimated that 15-20 percent of the drivers on the road do not carry insurance. Imagine sitting on a metro Atlanta interstate such as I-75, I-85, or Highway 400 in rush hour traffic and realizing that about 15-20 out of every hundred cars around you do not have the required liability insurance coverage. This is a sobering thought.
What Does Georgia State Law Say About Auto Insurance?
According to Georgia personal injury attorney Casey W. Stevens, Georgia state law requires that all owners of a motor vehicle to carry a liability insurance policy with a minimum of $25,000 per person with a maximum total of $50,000 per accident. A large percentage of Georgia drivers only carry the required state minimum coverage, and a portion of the drivers are "high risk drivers" who--because of their unfavorable driving record--often times cannot afford additional coverage. So, what happens if you are hit by a negligent driver who only carries the required minimum insurance? If you or your family members are involved in an accident and sustain serious injuries, the Georgia minimum policy limits can be exhausted very quickly. It doesn't matter if your injuries are serious or if your medical bills total more than $25,000 per person, you are only allowed to recover up to the maximum policy limits from the liability carrier of the at-fault driver. If you do not have uninsured motorist coverage on your policy, you will not be able to recover anything further.
Uninsured Drivers and Hit and Run Accidents
What happens if you are the victim of a hit and run driver, or hit by a driver who carries no insurance at all? Since Georgia law does not require drivers to carry uninsured motorist coverage, you could be in a bad situation if you are injured in an accident that is not your fault, and you do not have uninsured motorist coverage to fall back on: you could be paying for your own property damage and medical bills out of pocket. Expenses for medical treatment of serious injuries such as spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and broken bones add up very quickly and can total in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. These serious injuries may require hospitalization, nursing care, and physical therapy and cause loss of wages and pain and suffering. For many families who do not have a large amount of money set aside, a situation like this can cause great financial harm and add to the stress of recovery. Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage steps in when the at-fault driver's policy limit has been exhausted and/or when the at-fault driver has no insurance at all. It is wise to carry uninsured motorist coverage to protect you in the event that you are involved in an accident where the other driver is uninsured or underinsured.
Experienced Georgia Personal Injury Attorneys to Handle Your Accident Case
As a former insurance claims adjuster, attorney Casey W. Stevens knows how insurance companies try to undervalue or deny claims. All of the knowledge attorney Stevens gained in the insurance industry and as a former insurance defense attorney benefits our clients by getting them the best recovery possible on their cases. Contact our skilled uninsured motorist accident attorneys at the Law Office of Casey W. Stevens for your complimentary case evaluation at 770-408-6364. You pay us nothing until your case is resolved.