The main purpose of uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is to foot the bill if someone else causes your crash and they have no insurance. Ideally, this protects you from needing to pay for these costs out of pocket, as you might need to if you only had liability coverage.
However, is the cost worth taking on? That ultimately comes down to a number of factors, such as whether the insurance company honors the policy or tries to fight its way out of covering the damage. Your financial situation also plays a role.
Considering the basics
NerdWallet explains that there are two types of uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage pays for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and other effects of a crash you did not cause. When drivers do not have this type of insurance, health insurance may cover them and their family members, but no other passengers in the vehicle.
It does not cover damages to personal property. This is a separate but similar policy known as uninsured motorist property damage.
Deciding on when to get it
In some states, getting one or both types of uninsured motorist coverage is mandatory. In most states, including Texas, coverage is optional. When coverage is optional, you might wish to take the following into consideration:
- Do you have enough savings set aside to cover injuries or damages in a wreck?
- Will health insurance cover you and your family in the event of a wreck?
- Can you afford the monthly add-on to your insurance premium?
Is it worth paying for? Most professionals say yes. It can cost as little as $5 per month and is worth the peace of mind when insurance companies honor it. Even when they do not, at least drivers have the policy to call on when making a settlement claim or taking the matter to court.