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Uninsured/Underinsured Driver

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Uninsured/Underinsured Driver

New Jersey Uninsured/Underinsured Driver Attorneys

Representing clients injured by uninsured or underinsured motorists

It is not enough to simply know who caused an accident when you prepare to seek compensation for your injuries. Sometimes it is perfectly clear that another driver caused a crash, but if that driver does not have insurance, or enough insurance, it will be difficult or impossible to collect compensation. Unfortunately, many drivers on our New Jersey highways do not carry auto insurance or carry only the minimal amounts. In the case of a catastrophic injury, low levels of auto insurance will not come close to paying the bills.

There is hope, however, if you carry healthy levels of uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) motorist coverage through your own car insurance. Even when those resources are there, you likely need an experienced personal injury lawyer to ensure you receive all available compensation. Going after the benefits to which you are entitled to under your UM/UIM insurance is a job for the experienced, knowledgeable NJ car accident lawyers at Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP.

What is uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage?

After a car accident, you may be looking at a lot of destruction – both physical injury and damage to your car. In addition to the mental stress caused by an accident, victims also experience a financial loss. If the accident was not your fault, it can make the situation even more difficult to deal with. Filing an insurance claim is not always as simple as it appears, especially if you discover the at-fault driver was underinsured, or had no insurance at all.

  • Uninsured motorist insurance (UM) policies cover a driver in the event a driver without insurance causes you injury or property damage. Although it is against the law in New Jersey to drive without insurance, it does not stop some people from doing so anyway. Some motorists may let their insurance lapse or have it cancelled for failing to make payments. Regardless of why, UM insurance covers you in the event of a hit-and-run or when a driver cannot be located after causing an accident.
  • Underinsured motorist insurance (UIM) provides coverage if the at-fault driver has insufficient coverage for your losses. The minimum personal injury coverage required in NJ is $15,000, which is often not enough to cover serious injuries from a car accident. UIM coverage allows you to file a claim for the outstanding damages under your own policy.

Here is an example of how these benefits work. A driver hits your car and causes $80,000 in injuries and damages. The at-fault driver has only $15,000 in coverage. Your UIM insurance, however, has $100,000 in coverage. This means you can apply your UIM insurance for the $65,000 the at-fault driver’s insurance does not cover.

A few things to remember about UM/UIM in New Jersey

The State of NJ notes some key points regarding uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance:

  • Basic car insurance policies do not offer UM/UIM protection. The bare minimum UM/UIM limit is $5,000, but you may purchase higher limits. However, UM/UIIM coverage cannot be higher than your liability coverage.
  • You can only put your UM/UIM into effect if the uninsured party was at fault for the accident and your injuries. New Jersey’s comparative negligence law rules that a victim may only collect damages if their liability for the accident does not exceed that of the other driver.

The attorneys at Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP can answer all of your questions about this often-confusing process.

How our NJ car accident attorneys can help you secure compensation

When all is said and done, insurance companies are interested in one thing – protecting their profit margin. One way they do this is by attempting to minimize (or even deny) payouts on legitimate claims. Our insurance dispute lawyers understand the methods they use, and are prepared to go to trial if necessary to ensure you receive the compensation to which you are entitled.

If you are having difficulties with an insurance company getting a UM/UIM claim paid, our attorneys are ready to fight for you. We will review your policy from top to bottom, protecting your right to compensation when you are injured by a negligent driver. Whether your insurance company is delaying your payment, cancelling your policy, or increasing your premiums after an accident that wasn’t your fault, we will stand up for you.

The legal team at Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow, LLP will:

  • Communicate and negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf
  • Complete paperwork and file important documents
  • Fight to ensure you secure maximum compensation for your losses
  • Gather evidence to prove the other driver was at fault for the accident

We are happy to explain more at a free consultation.

What damages am I entitled to in a New Jersey uninsured motorist claim?

After a serious accident, you may find yourself facing medical bills, as well as potential loss of wages while you recover from your injuries. Our attorneys seek financial compensation on your behalf for:

  • Lost wages and future earning potential
  • Medical bills, current and future
  • Pain and suffering
  • Property damage
  • Wrongful death

Ensure you document everything about the accident and your injuries. Every detail, receipt and proof of medical treatment helps strengthen your case.

What is insurance bad faith?

An insurance bad faith action is like taking your insurance company to court for breach of contract. After all, an insurance policy is a binding and legal contract agreed upon by both parties. The policyholder pays their premiums, and the insurance company provides compensation in the event of an accident, injury, or loss.

In insurance bad faith claims, the policyholder must show that the insurance company failed to act fairly when it denied coverage, refused a claim, or paid out too little money. Our attorneys can deal directly with the insurance company and hold them responsible for their actions. We collect the evidence and documentation necessary to challenge denied or delayed claims.

NJ attorneys representing victims of uninsured and underinsured drivers

From offices in Edison, Red Bank and Toms River, our lawyers advise and represent clients in personal injury and wrongful death litigation matters throughout New Jersey, including UM/UIM cases. Get the answers and reassurance you need as you cope with the harsh financial realities of your accidental injury resulting from a traffic accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. If you are unable to come to our office, we can come to you in your hospital room or at home. Call us today at 732-777-0100 or contact us online to request a free consultation.

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