Each state has different insurance laws. This information applies to Florida policies only.
This article explains the difference between stacked and non-stacked uninsured motorist coverage.
There are two types of uninsured motorist coverage that you can purchase on your own car insurance policy:
- Stacked Uninsured Motorist
- Non-stacked UM coverage (also called Unstacked coverage)
What is uninsured motorist coverage?
- In Florida, Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage is an optional coverage.
- Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage is for you, your family, and the occupants of your car. It provides compensation to you and your family if you happen to be injured or killed by a driver who is uninsured (no insurance) or under-insured (not enough insurance). Compensation may be for medical bills, lost wages, pain, suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, or wrongful death.
- Many people chose to go without it. But we think that's a mistake. Florida ranks 5th for the largest number of uninsured or under-insured drivers in the entire country. This coverage is important, and we recommend it.
A major difference is whether you can combine your limits from each car insured into a larger limit.
Let's use an example to explain.
Non-stacked Uninsured Motorist Coverage (Unstacked)
An uninsured driver hits your car. Your car is wrecked, and you are seriously injured. You insure two cars on your personal auto insurance policy. Each car has an Uninsured Motorist (UM) limit of $50,000 per person /$100,000 per accident. You purchased non-stacked UM coverage.
You will be able to file a claim with your insurance company for your injuries. With non-stacked coverage, you have up to the limit of $50,000 to pay for your injuries. $100,000 is the cap for all people in your car who are also injured in the accident.
Stacked Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Let's say the same uninsured motorist hit your car. Again, your car is wrecked and you are seriously injured. You insure two cars on your auto insurance policy. Each you have STACKED Uninsured Motorist limit of $50,000 per person /$100,000 per accident.
You will be able to file a claim for with your insurance company for your injuries. With Stacked coverage, you can combine the uninsured motorist limits from the two cars insured on your policy. Here's what that means.
- $50,000 /$100,000 Uninsured Motorist Coverage
- x 2 cars on your policy
- = $100,000 per person / $200,000 per accident - Insurance Coverage Available.
When you have stacked coverage, the coverage limits can be higher. In this example, you would be able to collect up to $100,000 for your injuries, and up to $200,000 for all people injured in your car.
Stacked vs Non-stacked Uninsured Motorist in Florida
Non-stacked uninsured motorist is less expensive than stacked UM. However, price should not be the only factor in making your choice.
Generally, Stacked Uninsured Motorist coverage in Florida provides better coverage. Stacked Uninsured Motorist covers you while you are driving or riding in ANY car - whether that car is owned, borrowed, a roommates car, or even a motorcycle. Non-stacked (or unstacked) coverage only applies when you are in certain cars, and is more limited.
Here are the other differences between stacked and non-stacked coverage.
|Difference Between Stacked & Non-stacked UM in Florida||Stacked UM Pays?||Non-stacked UM pays?|
|UM is rejected||No||No|
|Can UM limits be combined?||Yes||No|
|Injured in a car you own & insure on this policy||Yes||Yes|
|Injured in a car you own & but insure outside of FL on another policy||Yes||No|
|Injured in your classic car insured on this policy||Yes||Yes|
|Injured in classic car insured on a different policy||Yes||No|
|Injured injured in a car you own & but insure on another policy||Yes||No|
|Injured in a car you own, but don't have any insurance on it||Yes||No|
|Injured in a car you DO NOT own. That car IS NOT available for your regular use||Yes||Yes|
|You are injured in a car you DO NOT own. That car IS available for your regular use||Yes||No|
|Injured on a motorcycle insured on this policy||Yes||Yes|
|Injured on a motorcycle insured on a different policy||Yes||No|
|Injured on a motorcycle you own but don't have insurance on it||Yes||No|
|Cost of UM Coverage||More Expensive than Non-stacked UM||Less Expensive than Stacked UM|
The chart above references cars a non-owned car that "available for your regular use." An example of this would be your roommates or a child's car who lives with you. These cars are "considered available for your regular use" as you live together. Your neighbors car borrowed once would not considered "available for your regular use."
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.
What do I need?
Uninsured motorist coverage is an important optional coverage, but many people chose to go without it. Florida has the 5th larges number of uninsured or under insured drivers in the entire country. So, we think this coverage is important, and recommend it. If you want better insurance and you want it to cover you in any car or motorcycle, purchase stacked coverage.
Ride a Motorcycle? Get Stacked Uninsured Motorist
Do you insure a motorcycle on motorcycle policy, but insure your cars on a different car insurance policy? You are not alone. However, you may not have considered coordinating your car and motorcycle policies. You should. Uninsured motorist coverage on a motorcycle policy can be very expensive, and you may have chosen to reject it on your motorcycle policy. Consider adding stacked uninsured motorist coverage to your Florida car insurance policy The stacked uninsured motorist coverage purchased on your car insurance policy will apply to injuries on your motorcycle (of course, as long as your injuries are caused by at-fault driver without any insurance or without enough insurance). Non-stacked uninsured motorist coverage would not cover you on that motorcycle. If you ride a motorcycle, get stacked uninsured motorist coverage on your car insurance policy. It can provide a big benefit to you.
Be sure to talk to your agent
Uninsured Motorist Coverage can be a confusing to understand. We recommend that you always discuss your situation with your insurance agent. This if for general information purposes only and should not be considered professional advice about what you should do. Please call and talk to your insurance agent before making a decision about your coverage.
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..