Archive for the ‘insurance’ Category

Don’t Loan A Car–Not Even To Tiger.

Monday, December 7th, 2009
Should You Loan Your Car?

Should You Loan Your Car?

MSN Money has a great article on the consequences of loaning a car to someone who is involved in an accident. Although the article takes a tongue and cheek look at the accident involving Tiger Woods, it provides helpful insight into what you can expect if you loan your car, and it is involved in an accident.

Perhaps most insightful is what happens if you loan your car to an uninsured driver.  If the uninsured driver who borrows your car causes the accident, your insurance will be 100% responsible for covering damages, including any injuries that occur.  If your uninsured friend is not responsible for the accident, but is injured, the other person’s insurance company will usually pay.  But what happens if the other driver is uninsured or carries too little insurance?

If you have uninsured (UM) or underinsured (UIM) motorist coverage on your car, your insurance company will pay for your friend’s bodily injury.  In these cases, your friend is treated as an insured under the policy, just as you would be.  He would be entitled to the same benefits as you.

What happens if you don’t carry insurance?  If you loan your car to someone who doesn’t have insurance, you have created a worst case scenario.  Not only are you violating Kentucky law, you’re setting yourself up to be personally responsible and criminally liable for the damages caused by your uninsured friend, including repayment of some benefits, like PIP, that do not depend on fault.

If you must loan your car to someone, at least understand the consequences if your car is later involved in an accident.  Make sure that you carry sufficient insurance to protect you and your friend.  Under no circumstance should you drive or allow someone else to drive your car without insurance.

Statistics Reveal Men Are Worse Drivers Than Women.

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009
Men Worse Drivers Than Women?

Men Worse Drivers Than Women?

MSN Money posted an interesting article on the topic of which gender made for the worse driver.  According to government and insurance industry statistics men are more likely than women to break traffic laws, drive under the influence, and be involved in accidents, including fatal ones.  Unfortunately, it’s not all good news for women drivers.  One statistic in which they led men was the percentage of women who received a DUI.  While men typically had more DUIs than women, the percentage of women receiving DUIs was actually increasing, while the percentage of men receiving them actually declined.

While these general assumptions might determine which gender was the worst drivers, they didn’t necessarily transfer into lower insurance premiums for women.  Those were based on more specific factors, including an individual’s driving record and the insurance company.

You can read the entire article here.

Smaller Cars Linked to Larger Insurance Rates?

Friday, July 17th, 2009
Smaller Car Equals Larger Insurance Premiums

Smaller Cars Equal Larger Car Insurance Premiums.

MSN Money has a nice article on smaller cars leading to larger insurance premiums.  You can read the entire article here.   While smaller cars lead to better fuel savings, which is a big deal right now, they most likely will lead to larger insurance premiums as well.  The Honda Civic and Toyota Prius are the most expensive cars to insure.  The reason might surprise you.

According to insurance companies smaller cars tend to be in more accidents and suffer more collision losses.  Smaller cars tend to be inexpensive and also tend to be driven by younger more at risk drivers.  If you buy a particular model that suffers large losses, you will pay for other driver’s mistakes.  For instance, the Civic is rated at “worse than average” for personal injury losses and medical payments.  The Civic Coupe is even worse.  It is “worse than average” for personal injury and “substantially worse than average” for collision, personal injury protection, and medical payments.

Unfortunately, this could have a terrible affect on the types and amounts of insurance coverage you buy.  Many drivers might be tempted to reduce their coverage or eliminate it all together just to afford the insurance on a new, smaller car.  This could be disastrous if you are involved in an car accident.  Saving a little money a month in premiums is simply not worth the overall cost you could suffer if you are underinsured, or worse uninsured, with particular coverage.

Be sure to consider the affect a new car purchase may have on your insurance rates before you buy.  Perhaps, it’s good to also remember that bigger may just actually be better.

Does Your Kentucky Car, Truck, or Motorcycle Accident Attorney Know Insurance Law?

Monday, June 15th, 2009
Does Your Kentucky Accident Attorney Know Insurance Law?

Does Your Kentucky Accident Attorney Know Insurance Law?

You see many advertisements for car, truck, or motorcycle accident attorneys in Kentucky promising to, “get you the compensation you deserve.”  However, nothing is mentioned about the insurance companies or policies from where this money comes.  Lawyers and most sophisticated clients know that the money will come from the insurance company for the party at fault for the accident if he or she has one and from the injured party’s insurance company if he or she doesn’t.  But simply because an accident attorney knows where to get the money doesn’t mean they know how.

Many accident attorneys will settle your claim with the insurance company without knowing what your case is worth.  They may demand entirely too much or even worse, seek to settle your case for too little.  Some might not even be able to describe to their client’s why they think you should settle for a particular amount offered by the insurance company.  If the insurance company refuses to pay due to some policy exclusion or coverage defense, then that attorney may be unsure how to fight for you to make sure that the insurance company is being fair.

Make sure that your car, truck, or motorcycle accident attorney knows insurance law and understands insurance policies, their specific coverages, and exclusions to coverage.  Retain an experienced car, truck or motorcycle accident attorney with a proven record of handling injury claims and one with knowledge of insurance companies and their practices and procedures.  Don’t get less or worse nothing, because your Kentucky accident attorney doesn’t know insurance law.

Are You Protected By Minimum Car Insurance Limits?

Thursday, June 4th, 2009
Are You Protected By Minimum Coverage?

Are You Protected By Minimum Coverage?

You often hear commercials about buying car insurance.  Many times these commercials offer to “get you insured for the minimum” or something similar.  What exactly is meant by “minimum” car insurance?  Will minimum car insurance limits protect you?

Kentucky law requires that all registered vehicles on the roadway carry “minimum coverage.”  In Kentucky, that coverage is $25,000.00.  This insurance provides protection for the  person causing an accident, while at the same time providing a recovery for those injured by a car accident.  If you’re at fault, minimum coverage will pay for the damage you have done.  If you’re the injured person, minimum coverage will compensate you for your injuries.

However, minimum coverage means exactly that, minimum.  It provides the least amount available.  This may not be enough.  If the person’s medical bills, lost wages, or pain and suffering are more than the $25,000.00, then cars carrying minimum insurance are “underinsured”.  If your car is underinsured your personal assets, like your home, personal property, or bank accounts might not be protected.  That’s because your insurance company is only required to pay as much as you’ve purchased.  You are responsible for any damages over that amount.

So, while you may be “legal for less” according to Kentucky law, you might not carry enough insurance to protect yourself.  What can you do?  You can purchase insurance in amounts above the minimum.  Most insurance companies provide coverages of $50,000.00 or $100,000.00 per person, which offer far more protection for more money.

If your purpose is to be legal and you don’t have any assets , then the minimum coverage may be enough.  However, to protect yourself against “underinsured” driver’s who purchase minimum coverage, purchase your own “underinsured” motorists coverage from your own insurance company.

Will Your Boat Insurance Protect You If You Have A Boating Accident?

Thursday, May 28th, 2009
Does Your Boat Have Insurance?

Does Your Boat Have Insurance?

During the summer months the chances that someone will be injured in a boating accident are very likely.  Unlike cars, boat operators are not required in Kentucky to have an operating license or driver education.  This increases the chances that an operator of a boat will be involved in an accident, whether or not it’s his fault.

Thousands of boats take to the lakes and rivers of Kentucky each year without insurance.  Did you know that if you’re injured in a boat accident you might not be entitled to recover your lost wages, medical expenses, disability, or pain and suffering?  Unlike car insurance that is mandatory, boat insurance is purely optional.  Chances are you could be riding on an uninsured boat or injured by one.  Operating a boat without insurance isn’t worth the risk.

Like cars, boat insurance is available.  If you are considering buying boat insurance, make sure that it includes liability coverage to protect you in the event that you injure your passengers or people riding on another boat.  It should also include medical payments coverage to pay medical expenses incurred by those injured on your boat that is not involved in an accident.  You may also wish to purchase uninsured watercraft coverage if you or your passengers are injured by another boat that does not carry insurance.

Unfortunately, this coverage is optional and must be purchased in addition to the coverages mentioned earlier.  However, many insurance policies offer discounts similar to car insurance for experienced boaters or those who have taken operation classes.

If you own a boat or plan on riding one this summer, make sure it has insurance in case of a boating accident.  If it does, make sure it has the optional uninsured watercraft coverage in the event the accident is caused by an uninsured boat owner or operator.  Given the speed and the lack of safety restraints or features, injures suffered in boating accidents can be catastrophic and even result in death.  Don’t take chances.  Make sure your boat is insured.

For more information on what you should do in case of a boat accident, visit the boater education website BOATED.

Things You Should Know About “Full” Coverage

Tuesday, May 26th, 2009
Does Your Insurance Policy Really Provide Full Coverage?

Does Your Insurance Policy Really Provide Full Coverage?

When I ask my clients about the amounts and types of coverage they have, I am often told that they have “full” coverage.  While I suspect this might be true, you should know that “full” coverage may not mean what you think.  Here are some things you should know.

“Full” coverage  typically means that your car, truck, or auto has liability coverage and collision or comprehensive coverage.  What’s the difference?  Liability insurance protects you in the event you’re in an accident that is your fault.  If someone is injured or their property damaged, your liability coverage will provide protection and pay compensation to the injured person.  In Kentucky, it is mandatory that all motor vehicles carry at least $25,000 in liability coverage.

Collision coverage will pay to have your car fixed, if it is damaged in an accident with another car.   Comprehensive coverage will pay to have your car fixed, if it is damaged by something other than an accident, say a falling tree branch, theft, or vandalism.

None of these coverages protect you in the event you are injured by an uninsured driver or a driver who carries insufficient insurance.  Uninsured and underinsured motorists coverage are coverages that you purchase to protect yourself.  Be sure to tell your insurance agent that you wish for these coverages to be included on your policy.  Don’t accept claims that you’re “fully” covered.  Make sure to specifically ask for these types of coverages and make sure they are provided by your agent.  If your current policy does not offer these benefits it might be wise to call you agent and have them included.

Renting A Car For Vacation? Buy The Insurance!

Friday, May 15th, 2009
Rental car insurance kentucky accident information attorney

Renting A Car On Vacation?

Summer is almost here and many will chose to take a vacation.  Whether you are looking to rent a car after flying to your destination or you rent a van or other passenger vehicle for a long trip, you might want to buy the insurance offered by the rental car company.  Many driver’s assume that their insurance will cover them if they are involved in an accident while driving a rental car.  Driver’s often opt to rely on their own policy and forgo paying the additional charge for rental insurance.  This may be a mistake.

Many policies of insurance exclude coverage for rental vehicles, including property damage to the vehicle you’ve rented.  Accidents can result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage and bodily injury.  The small sums you are required to pay for additional insurance, while renting a vehicle, are well worth the cost.  Don’t put yourself at risk.  Read your policy to make sure you know what is covered.  Or you might just want to buy the insurance to be safe.