How To Read Your Car Insurance Declaration Sheet For Pennsylvania Residents: Part 2

Every Case Is Different.
This Piece Only Applies To Pennsylvania.

  1. UNINSURED Motorist (UM) : This covers YOU if you are in a car accident and you are hit by someone with no insurance
    1. Uninsured motorist will also cover you if you are in a hit and run crash, where you are injured.
    2. What should you do? A lot of people reject this coverage without understanding what they are doing.
    3. PA LAW says that the insurance company must offer you the same coverage amounts for your injuries that you bought if you injured others.
    4. Why would you not insure yourself, when you are willing to insure other people.
    5. If the entry by Uninsured says: “rejected”, that means that you told your insurance company that you did not want any coverage for yourself.
    6. At the very least, I recommend that my clients have the same uninsured coverage that they have for bodily injury. There are a number of complicated reasons for this.
  2. UNDERINSURED Motorist Coverage (UIM) :
    1. What is this? UNDERINSURED coverage is for situations where you are in a car accident and the person who hit you has the state minimum $15,000 coverage, but you have a serious injury that is more than $15,000 of pain and suffering.
    2. For example, a student with $15,000 coverage crashes into you causing you to suffer a broken leg. Your lawyer tells you that the student’s insurance company will pay you the $15,000 but not more.
    3. Your lawyer also tells you that if you had insured yourself at least for the state minimum, then you would have another $15,000 to go after.
    4. If you REJECTED this coverage, you have a total recovery of $15,000.
    5. If you accepted and paid for Underinsured coverage, you would likely recover $30,000 total in this situation.
    1. Should you bother?
      1. YES. Most people carry the state minimum $15,000 coverage.
      2. It would be wise to at least match your uninsured and underinsured coverages to the amount you cover other people for.
  3. Do these situations ever happen?
    1. YES, all the time.
    2. $15,000 is a very low minimum in my opinion.
    3. Most serious car crashes will have $15,000 or more in injuries.
    4. So, the odds are that if you are in a serious car crash, meaning one worth pursuing, then you will need to have had Underinsured or Uninsured coverage.

Finally, I Would Suggest That You Have As Much Insurance As You Can Afford Given Your Circumstances. Insurance Is Generally Cheap Considering What They Have To Pay For If You Need To Make A Claim.