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The Truth About Uninsured Motorist Coverage In Florida: All You Need To Know

People never think they will get into an accident on a specific day. Such things happen spontaneously and can lead to serious injuries. They may also cause other financial damages such as loss of wages or car repair costs.

That is why you must know about uninsured motorist coverage in Florida. It can help reduce your financial burden after an accident to let you recover without much worries.

So let’s look at everything there is to know about uninsured motorist coverage in Florida.

What Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage In Florida?

An answer post explaining uninsured motorist coverage in Florida

In 2019, about 7 million cases of vehicle crashes were reported to the police in the US. This is why it is a must for people to protect themselves with insurance.

Typically, PIP is an insurance coverage that is necessary to get by Florida law. Every vehicle user must have at least $10,000 minimum personal injury protection.

Those who fail to meet the minimum PIP coverage or overall auto insurance are called uninsured motorists.

So getting uninsured motorist (UM) coverage can protect you during accidents with a driver who has no insurance or an insufficient policy.

The UM policy will cover damages that are usually covered by the at-fault party’s bodily injury liability (BIL) insurance.

How Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Work in Florida?

Every driver in Florida doesn’t have BIL, which is where UM comes into play. It will cover the following things if the at-fault party doesn’t have insurance or has a policy that won’t cover all your damages:

  • All medical expenses
  • Property damages
  • Lost wages
  • Decreased earning capacity
  • Pain and emotional suffering
  • Disabilities and temporary impairments

Other expenses that you make out of your pocket will also come under UM coverage. Pairing this insurance with your PIP policy can reduce your financial burdens significantly after accidents.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage Categories

An infographic on the two uninsured motorist coverage categories

Uninsured motorist coverage in Florida includes two primary categories:

  • Split limit UM coverage
  • Single limit UM coverage

The split limit coverage offers different compensation amounts for damages. This will depend on the number of people in the crash.

For example, if the accident involved only you and the other party, you may receive $20,000. Meanwhile, a crash involving multiple injured people or deaths can get you $40,000 for your injuries.

However, the single limit UM coverage will offer a specific amount regardless of the people involved in the accident. Most people opt for split policies because they provide greater flexibility and compensatory amounts.

Who Is At Risk For Motor Accidents In Florida: The Statistics 

At the end of 2023, Florida had reports of overall 394,206 crashes. Most of these accidents were due to car collisions. This is why people who drive cars are at high risk for motor crashes.

The second group ranking high for crashes involves motorcycle users. A total of 9,522 accidents took place in 2023 in this group.

Due to such a high rate of crashes, the uninsured motorist rate in Florida is 6.46%. This makes up about 1 million plus residents in this state.

Pedestrians are also at risk for motor accidents in Florida. Such people are mainly collateral damage when people lose control of their vehicles.

A car, motorcycle, or bicycle may ram into you walking on a pedestrian pathway. Such accidents led to about 779 fatalities in Florida in 2023.

This is why you must be careful when driving a car or walking down a street.

What Type Of Compensation Can You Claim With Uninsured Motorist Coverage?

You can claim for two types of damages with uninsured motorist coverage in Florida:

  • Financial damages
  • Non-economic damages

Financial or economic damages include injuries that cause direct loss of money. For example, medical bills come under this category. You may also have property damages and loss of wages with UM coverage.

Meanwhile, non-economic damages involve intangible injuries. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after an accident comes under these damages.

Any other type of emotional suffering is covered by non-economic damages. You may also seek compensation for physical suffering such as long-term pain after a crash under this category.

UM coverage also allows you to file wrongful death claims if you lose a loved one in a car crash.

Advantages Of Motorist Coverage In Florida

An infographic on the advantages of motorist coverage in Florida

There are various pros of uninsured motorist coverage in Florida including:

1.   You Will Receive Compensation Even If The Other Driver Doesn’t Have Insurance

The top benefit of uninsured motorist coverage in Florida is that you won’t have to rely on the other person for damages. Most drivers believe that the at-fault party would have insurance that would cover their injuries.

However, this is not always true. Out 1 in every 4 Florida drivers doesn’t have insurance coverage. This means you may have to pay out of your own pocket to cover economic and non-economic damages.

If you have uninsured motorist coverage in Florida, you will always receive some sort of compensation if the other party is at fault.

You’ll not have to worry about paying out of your pocket to cover medical bills or vehicle repair costs. Your financial burden will be low even if the at-fault party’s insurance doesn’t cover it.

The best thing is that the limits of BIL will not restrict your UM coverage if the other party doesn’t have former insurance. Some expenses that may not come under BIL may be covered by uninsured motorist coverage in Florida.

So be sure to read the policy of your insurance company thoroughly to understand the claims you can seek with their UM coverage. Every agency doesn’t offer the same benefits or max caps.

2.   Covers Additional Expenses That Exceed PIP Limit

Personal injury protection is a coverage that is necessary by law in Florida. Every vehicle user must get the minimum limit of PIP to avoid legal consequences.

However, PIP has specific limitations that you may not be a fan of. For instance, the insurance doesn’t cover car damage costs because they come under BIL policies.

This is why you may be in shock if you have PIP but the accident causes significant car damage. The other party may also not have BIL to cover your other costs.

Uninsured motorist coverage in Florida will come to your rescue in such cases. The insurance will cover property damage costs including your vehicle repairs.

Another limitation of PIP is that it has maximum cap limits. Typically, this insurance will cover 80% of your total expenses. You will have to cover the rest 20% yourself.

If you have UM coverage, most of the expenses in that 20% can be covered. This means the policy will minimize your additional expenses and reduce your financial burden.

From medical expenses to diminished earning capacity, UM coverage will fulfill all your needs. That is why it is good to pair this policy with your PIP to maximize coverage.

3.   Offers Security Against Hit-And-Run Cases

You can only get compensation from another driver’s BIL coverage if they offer you the right details. This is not possible in every case because many at-fault parties flee from the accident scene.

Such cases are called hit-and-runs where you may not make contact with the perpetrator. You will not have the contact information of the at-fault party or their insurance company.

This means filing a claim with them won’t be possible. Many such cases remain unsolved for years, so the burden of medical bills, property damages, and other costs will fall on your shoulders.

PIP will cover some of your injuries in these cases, but many remain uncovered. That is because damages in hit-and-runs usually exceed PIP limits significantly.

The best news is uninsured motorist coverage will be highly beneficial for such accidents. You will not need the information of the at-fault party to seek compensation.

As per the state laws, you can file a UM claim with your insurance provider. The agency will approve or disapprove the case upon investigation.

That is why hiring a lawyer to file such claims may help you avoid bad-faith insurance tactics. They will also help you recover the maximum amount for your accident.

4.   The Policy Also Covers Passengers

Every person doesn’t own a vehicle, but that doesn’t mean they can’t get into motor accidents. You may be traveling as a passenger in a relative’s car or a friend’s bike.

Pedestrian accidents are also common in Florida leading to about 10,000 injuries every year. A prime example of such a crash is a car ramming into you while you’re jogging on the side path.

If you’re a passenger in someone else’s car, their PIP coverage may offer you some relief. However, the most effective insurance will be your UM policy.

Uninsured motorist coverage in Florida allows passengers to receive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, earning potential loss, and much more.

The policy will cover you if you’re a:

  • A passenger in an uninsured car
  • Passenger in a commercial vehicle

It will also cover you if you’re walking as a pedestrian and a car or bike hits you.

If you or your loved ones have gotten into a motor accident where the at-fault party doesn’t have BIL, contact a car accident attorney. They will help you understand who will be covered by UM policy.

A lawyer may also help you or your beloved obtain favorable compensation in these cases.

5.   Makes It Easy To Recover Full Damages

Recovering your damages can be difficult with PIP and other insurance policies such as BIL. That is because of the maximum caps set by these coverage options.

Some people also think uninsured motorist coverage in Florida is automatically given to people with auto insurance. However, that is not true.

You will have to opt for this policy by letting your insurance agency know and filling out relevant forms. If you’ve done that, recovering damages will be a breeze.

The best thing is UM coverage doesn’t have lower maximum caps. This means you can recover full expenses for your injuries by filing a claim.

Your insurance agency will investigate the case before giving compensation for Florida uninsured motorist coverage. However, it is relatively easier to recover damages from this policy.

Court visits may not be necessary when recovering damages through uninsured motorist coverage in Florida. This is especially true for some specific cases.

Hiring an auto accident or personal injury lawyer may help you avoid tactics insurance companies use to avoid payouts. Such attorneys usually have high expertise in the industry.

Disadvantages Of Motorist Coverage In Florida

Let’s look at the various disadvantages of uninsured motorist coverage in Florida:

1.   High Insurance Cost

There are various pros of uninsured motorist coverage in Florida, but it’s one significant con is the high monthly premium. Every insurance policy costs a bit regardless of the company you get it from.

If you’re adding UM coverage to your auto insurance, you must pay an additional fee every month. This will increase the value of your monthly premium significantly.

That is especially true if you’re already struggling to pay your auto insurance premium. Typically, a person has to pay $270 per year for uninsured motorist coverage in Florida.

The increase in premium value is why most people don’t get Florida uninsured motorist coverage. Some people also don’t get the policy due to a lack of awareness.

While paying extra charges may be difficult and a drawback for you, overall that may not be the case. By getting UM coverage, you may save thousands of dollars in medical and other expenses.

If you get into an auto accident suddenly, uninsured motorist coverage in Florida would be the most helpful. So the high insurance cost may be worth paying to ensure you don’t lose more money.

2.   You May Never Get To Use The Policy

Uninsured motorist coverage in Florida is only applicable when you get into a motor accident. The policy will not cover your expenses if you fall at home due to a slippery floor or other personal injuries.

You may also be lucky enough to not get into accidents frequently. In such cases getting UM coverage may seem futile. Some people pay high insurance premiums for years without getting into accidents.

This means you may never get to use the policy for compensation. You may feel you’re losing out on money because of a chance that you may get into an accident one day.

That is why many people don’t get uninsured motorist coverage in Florida. Of course, you must remember being safe is better than being sorry.

You may save a few dollars per month, but that will be nothing if you do get into a crash and have thousands of dollars worth of expenses.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage In Florida: Stacked Vs Unstacked 

When you choose to get uninsured motorist coverage in Florida, you can choose from two things. You must decide whether to get stacked or unstacked coverage.

Let’s talk about these two things in detail to uncover the truth about uninsured motorist coverage:

1.   Stacked UM Coverage

Stacked insurance allows you to increase the coverage amount, depending on the number of vehicles you’re insuring. You can stack one policy with other policies in Florida to maximize coverage and compensatory benefits.

A prime example of this coverage is assuming you have two cars with separate policies. Each car may have UM insurance of $60,000. If you stack these policies when you get into a crash, your coverage limit will double.

This means your excess limit will be $120,000 for expenses instead of $60,000. The top thing you must ensure for stacking is that relevant vehicles are registered in your name.

Stacking policies will enhance your coverage limits without enhancing your liability capacities. However, you must note that it will increase your premium rate.

2.   Unstacked UM Coverage

Unstacked UM coverage is an option where you’ll have a single policy for your vehicle. This will not combine with other policies to enhance your coverage limits.

For example, if you have an unstacked UM coverage of $90,000 for one car in your family, your coverage limit will be the same. You cannot receive more than $90,000 for expenses after accidents.

That is regardless of whether you have more vehicles in your name or family. For instance, you may have three other cars with UM coverage of $100,000.

However, the unstacked status of the policies will mean they cannot be combined. So your coverage cannot increase to $390,000 in these types of policies.

The primary benefit of this coverage is it will keep your premium rate low. However, your coverage capacity will also be lower than stacking insurance policies.

Do I Need Uninsured Motorist Coverage In Florida?

A post answer if you need uninsured motorist coverage in Florida

The law in Florida doesn’t require you to get uninsured motorist coverage. This is an add-on policy that you could get with your auto insurance.

Its main purpose is to offer people protection in accidents where at-fault parties don’t have BIL coverage.

Getting UM coverage is also good because it will protect you in hit-and-run cases. The policy will bridge the gap of expenses left after reaching the maximum limits of PIP.

So while the insurance is not a legal requirement, it is ideal to get it anyway. The policy will protect you and your vehicle in cases where you’re not at fault.


Do You Really Need Uninsured Motorist Coverage In Florida?

Florida has one of the highest rates of motor accidents every year. So it is suitable to get uninsured motorist coverage in this state. You may get into unexpected accidents in your car on the way to work or while walking as a pedestrian.

What Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Pay For In Florida?

Uninsured motorist coverage in Florida pays for all medical expenses, including present and future bills. It also covers property damage, loss of wages, wrongful death, disabilities, and loss of earning potential.

What Happens When An Insured Driver Hits You In Florida?

If an insured driver hits you in Florida, PIP will be applicable to cover most of your expenses. Some injuries that may not be covered by PIP will be done so by the BIL of the at-fault party.

However, if the other party doesn’t have BIL, but you have UM coverage, your expenses will be covered in the same way.

Does Collision Cover Uninsured Motorist Florida?

UM insurance mainly protects the victim who wasn’t at fault. It doesn’t cover an uninsured motorist who caused an accident. Such people mainly receive protection through their PIP policy.

Contact A Personal Injury Lawyer In Winter Park To Help With Motor Accidents

That was the complete truth about uninsured motorist coverage in Florida. If you live in Winter Park or other cities in Florida, be sure to contact us today.

Our personal injury lawyer with expertise in motor accident cases can help you file a claim and understand the rules surrounding UM coverage.

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