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Bike Accident

A Case Study in Why You Should Carry Underinsured Motorist Coverage

This person came in because he was hit by a car while riding his bike.  He had a green light at the intersection and this truck slammed into him, breaking his leg and otherwise hurting him, bad.  After being hospitalized and having emergency surgery, he had to recover in a skilled nursing facility.  His bills from these things alone are over $40,000.

The good news?  The gal who hit him carried insurance.  The bad news?  It was minimum limits:  $25,000.  The more bad news?  He didn’t have UIM himself.  The worst news?  The medical providers are turning him into collections.

Unfortunately, there wasn’t much we could do for this guy.  As the old saying goes, “you can’t get blood out of a turnip.”  We were able to get him the $5,000 medpay the driver carried — but, that’s just a drop in the bucket.

We’re all having trouble accepting the reality that his credit is being ruined because he was almost killed in a wreck he didn’t cause.  And the driver who caused it?  She hasn’t learned her lesson:  she told me that she “can’t afford” to increase her auto insurance limits.

This, my friends, is why you need to carry underinsured motorist coverage.  If the bicyclist had had UIM, there would be money to pay his medical bills and help balance the scales for him regarding the changes he is having to make in his life because of the ongoing pain from his injuries.  But, he didn’t have insurance, and we’re all facing the reality.

So, go and check your auto insurance today.  UIM is not expensive.  My family and I carry $250k in UM/UIM.  It only costs $34 a year.   Protect yourself, because nobody else is going to do it for you.

About the Author

Rebecca RutzRebecca “Becky” Henning-Rutz graduated from the University of Montana with her law degree in 2006 and has been working in Kalispell ever since. Becky has been working as an associate for Henning, Keedy & Lee since 2007.View all posts by Rebecca Rutz →

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