About one driver in seven isn’t insured for liability, says the Insurance Research Council.
If you are injured by an uninsured driver and don’t have your own medical insurance, medical payments coverage or personal injury protection, you would be responsible for your own hospital bills. If you’re hit by one of them and don’t have collision coverage, you would have to pay your own repair bills or go after the at-fault driver in court.
Uninsured motorist coverage fills the gaps. It pays the costs of your hospital stay if you’re hit by an uninsured driver, and it helps pay for repairs to your car.
That does not mean it is a good replacement for either health insurance or for collision coverage, both of which cover your injuries and your car in many more situations. But it is typically cheaper, and it is certainly better than no coverage at all.
Some states require drivers to buy uninsured motorist coverage, and in others, it isn’t available.
In states where the coverage is available, it can be sold separately as uninsured motorist bodily injury protection (UM) or uninsured motorist property damage protection (UMPD), or bundled together. It also can be bundled with underinsured motorist coverage, which protects you from other drivers who have insurance, but not enough to pay for your injuries or car repairs. (You should check your state’s minimum insurance requirements page for information on the availability of uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage.)
Here are answers to some of the most common questions. If you don’t see the answer, search to see if we have already answered your uninsured motorist coverage question. If not, you can ask a new one.