Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Insure Thyself: Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Today I am going to post a little something about insurance. Sorry to pull the lawyer thing but this is Boston Bike Law, and I am a lawyer after all. Ok here goes:

If you own a car and have registered it in Massachusetts, then you probably have auto insurance. Some of the coverage is mandatory (so if you don't have it you better get it) but some of it is optional and not all drivers have it (or if they have it they don't have enough of it). If you ride bikes, there is a type of optional coverage you really need to look into called underinsured motorist coverage. The coverage potentially applies whether you are in your car, on your bike or hoofing it through Boston traffic on foot.

Why should you consider buying additional underinsured motorist coverage? Because if you get hit by a car while riding your bike, you don't get to choose the net worth of the person who hits you. See all those taxicabs, beaters and tuners out there? Assume they only have $20,000.00 in liability coverage. Medical bills alone can eat up $20,000.00 pretty quickly. If you beef up your underinsured motorist benefits your own insurance policy can make up some or all of the gap in liability insurance coverage which would otherwise exist.

So you may want to go and review your policy declarations page to see the coverage you have, and then talk to your agent about what it would cost to add some additional underinsured motorist coverage. If you ride a bike in Massachusetts, you may find that it's worth it to pay a bit more in premium for some extra coverage.

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