According to a study from Car Insurance Comparison, South Carolina is tied for the third-worst state in the US for dangerous driving, and in 2020 over 30 fatalities occurred in Rock Hill. If you live in Rock Hill, you’ve likely traveled along the I-77 corridor more times than you can count, and you’ve probably seen just as many car accidents. Getting into a car accident is a stressful experience. This experience may be more stressful when the accident involves an uninsured or underinsured driver.
Luckily, South Carolina requires drivers to carry uninsured motorist insurance under their minimum liability coverage. Having this coverage means you can file an uninsured motorist claim through your own insurance policy and recover compensation for damages caused by the collision where the at-fault party does not have insurance. However, if the at-fault driver has insurance, but not enough insurance to cover your losses, it is good to have underinsured motorist coverage as well.
Even though this option is available and helps protect you by reimbursing out-of-pocket costs, you may have questions about how the claim will impact your insurance premium. Will making a UM or UIM claim cause your rates to go up?
South Carolina Car Auto Insurance Coverage Requirements
South Carolina drivers are required to carry liability insurance that meets the following minimums:
Bodily Injury (BI) – $25,000 per person/ $50,000 per accident. BI pays for the other party’s medical bills when you are at fault for the collision. This policy also covers legal expenses if the other driver sues you.
Property Damage (PD) – $25,000 per accident. PD pays for damage to the other vehicle when you cause the accident. However, it will not pay for damage to your vehicle.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage in South Carolina
South Carolina drivers must also carry uninsured motorist coverage in the minimum-coverage car insurance policy. Your uninsured motorist coverage allows you to file a claim with your own insurance company and they will pay for the damages where the at-fault driver does not have insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage is separate additional coverage under your own policy to help with damages that the other driver’s policy didn’t cover.
What Does UM/UIM Motorist Insurance Cover?
If you are in an accident with an uninsured driver, your uninsured motorist insurance will cover the damages up to your policy limit. This includes:
- Medical Expenses – Medical bills are the costs of treating injuries resulting from an accident. These expenses can include ambulance rides, hospital stays, and doctor’s visits.
- Property Damage – This will cover the damage to your own vehicle where the at-fault driver does not have insurance.
- Lost Wages – If you cannot work due to an accident, you may be able to recover lost wages. This would be the amount of money you would have earned if you could work.
- Pain and Suffering – Pain and suffering is the physical pain and emotional anguish you experience due to an accident. This can include things like anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
How to File Underinsured and Uninsured Motorist Claims
If you are involved in an accident with an underinsured or uninsured driver, you may be wondering how to file a claim. The first step is to contact your insurance provider and tell them what happened. Be sure to have all the pertinent information, such as the other driver’s name, insurance information, and police report number. Your insurance company will then open a claim and begin investigating.
If you are involved in a car accident with an at-fault driver who does not have any car insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover the damages, you should contact a car accident attorney as soon as possible. At The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor in Rock Hill, we will help you with your insurance claim and ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled.
Will an Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Claim Raise My Insurance Premiums?
You may be worried that claiming your UM/UIM coverage will cause your insurance rates to go up. In most cases, your rates will not increase if you make a claim under your UM/UIM policy since you were not at fault for the accident. However, your rates may increase if you are found to be at fault for the accident.
Contact a Rock Hill Car Accident Attorney Today
If you are involved in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you deserve fair compensation for your injuries.
Our auto accident attorneys in Rock Hill, SC have experience with all types of personal injury cases, and we are not afraid to take on insurance companies to help you obtain fair compensation. Contact The Law Offices of Jason E. Taylor today for your free initial consultation and learn more about what we can do to help you. We will answer your questions and explain all of your legal options.