Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
In New Mexico, all motorists are obligated to carry a minimum of $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident for bodily injuries and $10,000 for property damage. A frustrating reality is that many drivers in New Mexico violate the law by not carrying any auto mobile insurance coverage. Additionally, many insurance companies claim they do not provide coverage for reckless driving, such as drunk driving or racing. Even when drivers carry the minimum liability coverage, these minimums often fall short of providing full coverage for your personal injuries, especially with rising medical costs and severe injuries.
The purpose of Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage is to put the car accident victim in the same position they would have been in had the at-fault driver had liability coverage equal to the coverage of the accident victim.
The Uninsured Scenario
The classic uninsured scenario occurs when an at-fault driver never purchased auto insurance. It also may arise through a hit-and-run crash when the at-fault driver cannot be identified. Sometimes insurance companies claim their auto policy does not cover punitive damages like drunk driving, which leaves the at-fault drunk driver uninsured for the damages he or she caused. If you purchased Uninsured Motorist Coverage, your insurance company steps into the shoes of the at-fault driver to cover your damages, including compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
The Underinsured Scenario
In underinsured cases, the at-fault driver has insufficient liability insurance to cover the victim’s damages. For example, let’s say your claim is worth $300,000 but the at-fault driver only carried the state required $25,000 per person bodily injury limit. In this scenario, the at-fault driver is underinsured to you by $275,000 ($300,000 total damages minus $25,000 coverage). If you purchased $300,000 in underinsured coverage, your insurance company would need to fairly evaluate your claim and pay you the $275,000 underinsured amount.
Do You Need an Attorney to Help With Your Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage Claim?
In Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage claims, your insurance company essentially steps into the shoes of the at-fault driver and defends against your damages. Having a legal team on your side to make sure your insurance company fairly and reasonably evaluates your injuries is critical. Our team at Martinez, Hart, Thompson & Sanchez, P.C. has a wealth of expertise to investigate ALL available insurance coverages to maximize your recovery. We commence every case by investigating whether or not an uninsured/underinsured scenario applies by reviewing your entire insurance policy and all paperwork from the insurance company. We then evaluate whether you should make a claim for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, and, if so, we help you prepare the best claim for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
Martinez, Hart, Thompson & Sanchez, P.C. diligently supports our clients to ensure they receive fair compensation. If you suffered a crash, you need a team on your side. Please contact us today at 505-343-1776 for more information or to schedule a consultation with our legal team.