In Florida, you are not required to purchase Uninsured Motorist Insurance coverage. However, we think this is an extremely important coverage to have in Florida. Each state has different insurance laws. This information applies to Florida policies only.
Florida Uninsured Motorist Insurance Coverage Explained
This article covers 7 Frequently asked questions. Read below to learn:
- What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?
- Why is UM coverage important in Florida?
- I have medical insurance. Why should I buy UM on my car insurance policy?
- What UM coverage limits are available?
- What’s the difference between stacked and non-stacked uninsured motorist (UM) coverage?
- I have an old car. I don’t think I need high insurance limits, right?
- How much auto insurance coverage do I need?
What is uninsured motorist (UM) coverage in Florida?
In Florida, Uninsured Motorist Coverage is an optional coverage you can purchase on your own auto insurance policy. Uninsured Motorist coverage is for you and your relatives who live with you, and people who occupy your car. UM pays you for injuries caused by an auto accident where the at-fault driver is uninsured (has no insurance) or under-insured driver (not enough insurance). UM coverage can be used where you or your family members or driver of your car did not cause the auto accident.
One thing to know, UM does not pay for your car. We recommend purchasing collision coverage on your car to cover damages to your car caused by an uninsured motorist.
UM coverage pays for things like:
- medical bills
- loss of the future enjoyment of life
- lost wages and disability
- long term nursing care
- wheelchairs and medical devices
- pain & suffering
- replacement services for things you are no longer able to do: yard service, cleaning, etc.
- · cost to retro-fit your house to accommodate disabilities caused by the auto accident
Why is uninsured motorist important in Florida?
· In 2012, 23.8% of Florida drivers had no auto insurance. Florida ranks #5 in the USA for the number of uninsured drivers on the road
· In Florida, drivers are considered “insured” with limits as low as $10,000 per person/$20,000 per accident for bodily injury. That doesn’t even pay for a trip to the Emergency Room these days.
· 49% of Florida auto insurance policies have limits of $25,000 per person or lower.
If you are hurt or injured in a car accident by one of these uninsured (no insurance) or under-insured drivers (not enough insurance), you may have to pay for your own injuries out of pocket. This is why we recommend you buy uninsured motorist coverage.
I have medical insurance. Why should I buy uninsured motorist coverage?
Medical bills are only a portion of what you can claim on uninsured motorist coverage. UM also pays for things like….
· loss of the future enjoyment of life
· lost wages and disability
· Long term nursing care
· wheelchairs and medical devices
· Pain & suffering
· replacement services for things you are no longer able to do: yard service, cleaning, etc.
· retro-fit your house to accommodate disabilities caused by the auto accident
Most of the list above is not covered or are limited by medical insurance.
What Uninsured Motorist coverage limits are available?
In Florida, you can reject UM coverage, or chose a limit of insurance. You cannot chose an uninsured motorist limit higher than the bodily injury liability limit you selected. Typical uninsured motorist limits available on auto insurance policies are:
|Non-Stacked UM Limits Available||Stacked UM Limits Available|
|$10,000 / $20,000||$10,000 / $20,000|
|$25,000/ $50,000||$25,000/ $50,000|
|$50,000/ $100,000||$50,000/ $100,000|
|$100,000/ $300,000||$100,000/ $300,000|
|$250,000/ $500,000||$250,000/ $500,000|
|$500,000/ $500,000||$500,000/ $500,000|
|* Higher limits available on Umbrella Policy|
If you want UM limits higher than $500,000, you can purchase an additional $1 million of uninsured motorist coverage on a personal umbrella policy. If you have questions, we recommend you talk to your agent about this.
Uninsured motorist limits are usually shown with two figures (ex. $25,000/$50,000). In this example, the first number listed ($25,000) is the maximum amount any one person can collect. The second number listed ($50,000) is the max available for all people injured in the accident -- regardless of the number of people hurt.
What’s the difference between stacked and non-stacked uninsured motorist (UM) coverage?
There are two types of uninsured motorist coverage – Non-stacked and Stacked.
Non-stacked Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Florida:
- Non-stacked UM is cheaper than stacked UM
- It covers you when occupying vehicles listed on that auto insurance policy
- The non-stacked UM Limit shown on the policy declarations is maximum collectible
Stacked UM Coverage in Florida
- Stacked UM can provide higher limits and is comprehensive than non-stacked UM coverage
- Covers you when your are in vehicles listed on your insurance policy
- It also covers you in cars not listed on the policy ( ex. driving a roommates car, a company car, classic car insured on another policy)
- Stacked UM on your auto policy covers you while riding motorcycles. Non-stacked coverage does not cover you on motorcycle. If you have or ride on a motorcycle, we recommend that you purchase Stacked uninsured motorist
- The Stacked UM limit shown on your policy is multiplied based on the # of cars insured on your policy (see example below)
- Stacked UM is more expensive than Non-stacked uninsured motorist
Let’s assume you have 3 cars insured on a policy and you have selected UM limits of $50,000/$100,000.
If you select non-stacked uninsured motorist coverage, the limits on the policy ($50,000 /$100,000) would be the most you could collect.
If you purchase stacked uninsured motorist, you could get much higher limits. Take the uninsured motorist limit selected and multiply it by the # of cars insured on the policy.
Ex: $50,000/$100,000 x 3 cars the policy = $150,000 per person / $300,000 per accident.
There can be really big difference in stacked vs. non-stacked UM coverage. Yes, stacked uninsured motorist coverage is more expensive, but it is better coverage.
Learn More: Read our blog -- What is the Difference Between Stacked & Unstacked Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage in Florida?
I have an old car. I don’t think I need high insurance limits.
We hear this a lot because many people think old car, I should get low insurance limits. We disagree! Here’s why…
As a car gets old, you may decide to go without coverage on the car (comprehensive / collision). That’s fine, and even recommended depending on the value of the car.
But, auto insurance also pays:
1) when you cause injuries to someone else or
2) someone causes injury to you.
Neither of those have anything to do with the kind of car you drive. You need liability insurance limits and uninsured motorist limits high enough to protect your assets. This is true whether you drive a brand new car or an old car.
How much auto insurance coverage do I need?
Many people think of auto insurance as only covering damage to the car. Auto insurance can also cover you for being sued as a result of causing an accident, or for injuries you sustain during an auto accident. It will also pay the cost of defending you due to a lawsuit (ie attorneys fees). Our agency recommends that you should purchase insurance with limits high enough to protect your assets and income. Please call us or your agent to discuss your particular situation.
If your household is a high income earner or you have more than $250,000 in assets, talk to an insurance agent about an umbrella policy. An umbrella policy provides additional liability limits, which will help to protect your financial future. Umbrella policies are very affordable. In Florida, an umbrella policy that will provide an additional $1 million of liability insurance costs between $200-$450/year.
Need More Help or Want an Instant Online Auto Insurance Quote ?
If you are unsure of what you purchased on your auto insurance policy or if you would like to review your insurance limits, feel free to call our office at 904-268-3106 or Toll Free at 888-212-7858. We would be happy to discuss this with you and to provide you with quotes to add or change your coverages. We are open Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 5 pm.