Getting into an accident is a terrifying experience. One moment you're headed somewhere, and the next, you're hurt, and your vehicle is damaged. While you may drive thousands of times with no issue, every time you drive you risk an accident. When one finally does happen to you, you probably assume right away that your motor vehicle insurance will take care of you. After all, you've probably had a policy and paid a premium without any major claims for years. Money is probably the last thing you're worried about in the immediate aftermath of an accident, but it could still become a serious issue.
Utah requires no-fault insurance policies for all drivers. That means that if a driver is complying with the law, the vehicle has a policy with at least some coverage for both property damage and personal liability for injuries to others. The fact that both of you have insurance is a good thing. Getting into an accident with someone who doesn't have insurance can cause some serious issues for you financially. Just because the other party was insured, however, doesn't mean that the coverage will be enough to adequately compensate you after a serious accident.
State minimum insurance doesn't cover much
Utah only requires that drivers carry $15,000 in property damage and $25,000 for one injured person or $65,000 for two or more injured people. Many times, the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle can exceed $15,000. Surgeries and physical therapy for injuries can quickly reach the maximum amount of coverage under this kind of policy. Even worse, the automobile insurance companies may refuse to pay until they determine amongst themselves who was liable and responsible for the accident. The amount of the payout from the insurance company will depend on the allocation of fault for the accident.
Typically, fault and liability get expressed in percentages. If insurers determine that you are less than 50 percent liable, you may receive some compensation from the other driver's policy. However, if insurers believe you are partially responsible, that could reduce the amount of compensation you'll receive from the policy. If you are both equally liable for the accident, you may only be able to make a claim against your own no fault policy. Getting payment for medical costs can become a protracted and frustrating process.
An attorney can help you in cases with poor insurance coverage
Working with an experienced Utah personal injury attorney can help you explore your options after a serious car accident. If you're concerned that insurance won't cover all costs or worried that a settlement offer is too low, your lawyer can review the information and help you make an informed decision.