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How uninsured motorist coverage can and can't protect you

Because of the unfortunate propensity of some individuals to drive with no or limited insurance coverage, many Coloradans opt to add uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage to their policies. If you haven't added this coverage to your policy, you need only call your insurance carrier because, in Colorado, all insurers are required to make it available to their customers.

Having this optional coverage can be a real godsend if you are in an accident caused by a negligent driver who lacks coverage. All too often, such drivers do not have much money to begin with, so there is no reason to try to pursue a civil suit. This leaves you having to cover the damages and medical expenses produced by the accident.

But it is also important to understand some of the unexpected benefits and limitations of uninsured/underinsured coverage. For example, your coverage may extend to when you are a pedestrian, meaning if you are struck by an uninsured driver while walking or riding your bike, you may be able to get compensation.

But bear in mind, you can only purchase uninsured/underinsured coverage for a car, truck, motorcycle or other motor vehicle that requires a license for use on the road. So, if you have an ATV or other vehicle that is not allowed on the roads of Colorado, it cannot be covered under your auto policy for uninsured/underinsured accidents.

If you have the right coverage, you should be able to collect on a claim if you have been in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. But sometimes an insurance company may offer an initial settlement that is less than the amount you are actually eligible to receive.

If you are having difficulty getting an insurer to pay your uninsured/underinsured motorist claim, a Colorado uninsured claim attorney could act as your representative. With a knowledgeable attorney on your side, the insurance company may be more cooperative in settling your claim fairly. If not, the attorney could take the necessary legal steps in an effort to get you appropriate compensation.

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