Common Question 5

Question: The accident was the other driver’s fault. Why should I use my own insurance? Will my rate go up?

Answer: The law requires only that each driver carry “liability” insurance. This is insurance that covers “the other guy” in case of an accident that is your fault. There are several other types of coverage that are designed to protect you, your family and those riding in your vehicle. For example:

  • Uninsured Motorist/Underinsured Motorist covers you, your family and passengers when you are involved in an accident with a person who is uninsured, or who has insufficient insurance to cover your injuries and damages. Your own insurance can step in to help make up the difference.
  • Medical Payments covers you, your family and passengers who are injured in a motor vehicle-related accident, even if you/they were not in a car at the time; medical expenses for each person can be covered up to the limit that you purchased. It does not matter whose fault caused the accident. This can be very helpful if you have no health insurance, or if you wish to see a medical provider outside of your health plan.
  • Comprehensive and Collision cover damage to your own vehicle.
    • “Collision” covers your vehicle damage (minus your deductible) in case of a collision with another vehicle or any other object.
    • “Comprehensive” covers damage to your vehicle from all other causes (unless expressly excluded by your policy).
  • If the reason for the claim was not your fault, your carrier may not raise your rates simply because you used your coverage.

There may be other good reasons to use your own insurance. If you have any insurance of your own that may also cover part of your injuries and damages, such as health insurance of the coverages listed above, you can use them to cover some of your damages. Of course, you should also make a demand for all your damages to the insurance company of the other driver. If you recover payment from the other insurance company, the majority of health insurers and medical payment insurers require that you repay to them the benefits that you received. Nevertheless, your attorney can help you reduce the repayment by a significant percentage. The amount saved is extra money for you – money that you would not have received if you had not used your own insurance coverage.

The use of all available insurance – yours and the other guy’s — may increase your net recovery from your accident case.

You paid for the coverage; you are entitled to use it!

If you would like us to evaluate your accident claim, please complete and submit a Case Evaluation Form.