While most motorists do their best to abide by the law and carry the state's required auto insurance, there are still thousands of drivers who elect not to carry auto insurance. Unfortunately, the primary reasons why people don't have auto insurance are because they either can't afford it or they don't have a valid driver's license to begin with.
At any given moment you could be driving side-by-side one of the state's thousands of uninsured motorists and if you're involved in an accident with one of them, your chances of receiving compensation in a civil lawsuit from them is next to nothing since they can't afford auto insurance to begin with. The only way to protect yourself in the event you are involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist is to carry uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) is insurance coverage that covers you in the event you are involved in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist. In Alabama, insurance companies provide UM & UIM coverage on all insurance policies unless the insured signs a written rejection stating they don't want this coverage. Some people make the mistake of waiving this coverage in order to save a few dollars on their insurance premium, and this is not a good idea.
While auto insurance coverage can be expensive, fortunately the cost of UM/UIM coverage is not expensive. The minimum limit for uninsured motorist coverage under Alabama law is $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident; however, we recommend that you carry as much coverage as possible. The limits for UM coverage can go as high as $250,000 per person/$500,000 per accident and up to $500,000 per person/$1,000,0000 per accident; we recommend you obtain as much UM coverage as you can afford.
Alabama's UM & UIM law allows driver's to stack or add vehicle coverage amounts together; however, it only allows a person to stack three cars on an insurance policy. This means that if you're involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist and you have 3 vehicles under your policy with limits of $25,000 each, you could stack the coverage on the three vehicles and therefore have $75,000 worth of UM coverage.
The best way to deal with uninsured motorists is to prepare ahead of time by making sure that you have uninsured motorist coverage and plenty of it. If you've been involved in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, a Montgomery car accident attorney from Morris, Andrews, Talmadge & Driggers, LLC can help explain your policy and file a claim with your own insurance company. If your own insurance carrier attempts to devalue or fight the claim for any reason, we are prepared to put our years of experience and skill to work for you and be your greatest advocate during the claims process.