$225,000.00 settlement in case of Liability Insurance not covering bodily injury in Auto accident
After being involved in a motor vehicle accident whereby another driver was at fault, our client suffered serious back problems which ultimately necessitated a spinal fusion. The at-fault driver had insufficient liability insurance to cover our client’s damages and Will Ferguson & Associates secured a settlement with the client’s own insurer for the limits of her underinsured motorist coverage.
Cases like this are useful for purposes of illustrating the differences between, and importance of, liability coverage and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in an auto insurance policy.
- Liability Coverage: This coverage is used when an auto accident is your fault. Liability coverage pays for bodily injury or property damage expenses incurred by the other driver who was not at fault for the accident. In New Mexico, all drivers are required by law to carry a minimum amount of liability coverage; all drivers are required to have $25,000 for bodily injury to any one person in any one accident and $50,000 for bodily injury to two or more persons in any one accident.
- Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage: This coverage is used for your own medical expenses and/or repair bills when you are in an auto accident, another driver is at fault for the accident, and the at-fault driver does not have any (or does not have sufficient) liability coverage to pay for all your accident-related expenses. In New Mexico, all automobile insurance policies must provide uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage unless such coverage is specifically rejected by the policy holder.
In this case, the at-fault driver had only the minimum liability coverage required by law ($25,000) with which to pay our client for her injuries. However, our client’s injuries and damages exceeded $25,000. Because our client had uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, Will Ferguson & Associates was able to negotiate with the client’s insurer to ensure she received the full value of her own insurance policy.