I do not sell car insurance, but as a lawyer who practices personal injury, I often see people suffering from bad insurance. Often this happens because they bought directly from an insurance company instead of an independent broker.
Many of my clients who have been seriously injured in a car accident suffered from someone who had no insurance or insurance coverage only, which is 25,000 in New York and much less in many other states. Unfortunately, many of my customers were selling insurance policies with 100,000 or 300,000 limitations, but were not sold matching uninsured and insurance coverage.
Just this week, another client had this problem. My client was a pedestrian who crossed the street when she was beaten by a car fleeing from the scene. The driver was caught immediately after leaving the accident, but the owner of the car has only the New York state minimum liability insurance of 25,000 and my client has serious injuries consisting of many broken legs, including a broken arm, leg and skull.
My client owns a car with liability insurance of 300,000, but she bought insurance from GEICO whose vendor did not sell its insurance coverage. GEICO does not use independent insurance brokers but sells insurance directly to consumers through domestic sales agents.
For a small fee, my client could have bought underinsured coverage of 300,000 which would have allowed her to recover 300,000 for her damages instead of 25,000. Ironically, she did not need the 300,000 coverage to protect their assets. However, since you can not buy underinsured coverage higher than your liability insurance, I would have invited her to purchase 300,000 liability coverage with the sole purpose of purchasing 300,000 under insured coverage.
I have had many customers in this situation who lost their jobs due to serious damage and incurred huge debt. If they had matching underinsured coverage, the extra money available to pay their claim would be a great help to pay their bills and get their lives back together.
Underinsured motorist coverage will pay you money from your own car insurance if you have been injured in a car accident by someone who was neglected to cause your injury and that had less liability insurance than you did. Uninsured motorist coverage will pay you when the other car has no insurance coverage or the identity of the other car is unknown.
Underinsured and uninsured coverage is cheap and usually available in limits that match your liability insurance. It is not available in amounts greater than your liability insurance.
Under-insured and uninsured coverage is so important that a couple of states now need coverage limits that match your liability insurance limits, unless you deny written coverage. Several years ago, I suggested several seniors in New York state that they adopted a similar law in New York.
I have also seen many customers who did not sell the maximum health insurance coverage, which only costs me 2.01 per month on my car insurance. This is especially important for people who do not have good health insurance. It is also useful for passengers who do not have health insurance.
Why should you buy car insurance through an independent insurance broker? Courts have defined the cause. There have been several malpractice processes against insurance companies for failing to offer unsecured and uninsured drivers coverage limits that match the liability limits. However, when the insurance company sells directly to consumers, these cases have been in favor of the insurance companies. Courts found that when a consumer buys insurance directly from an insurance company, rather than an insurance broker, the consumer only purchases insurance and does not pay for advice.
When you buy car insurance from an independent insurance broker that represents several insurance companies, you get the benefit of an insurance professional who can evaluate your needs and advise you on it. In addition, only an independent insurance broker can offer you a selection of insurance companies and premiums, so you get the best possible coverage at the lowest price.
Whether you buy your car insurance directly from an insurance company or through an independent insurance broker, always make sure you purchase matching, uninsured and underinsured motor vehicle tires and the maximum healthcare benefits.