If the total cost of your damages exceeds the responsible party's insurance limits that does not necessarily mean you are stuck with the loss.  If, for example, your damages are $100,000, but the party who hit you only has policy limits of $25,000 leaving you with an additional $75,000 loss, you may be able to turn to your own insurance company.

If you have Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage with your own insurance policy, it may provide additional compensation to you when the other party's policy limits are not high enough to cover your injuries and damages, i.e. when the other party is underinsured. In Kansas, it is important to keep in mind, though, that UIM coverage only applies if your insurance policy limits exceed the other party's policy limits.  So, if you both only have $25,000 in coverage, your underinsured motorist coverage would not apply.  If your UIM coverage is $50,000, then you will only be entitled to receive up to an additional $25,000 to cover your damages, which is the difference between your coverage and the other party's; you would not be able to recover the entire $75,000, which is why we recommend you carry UIM coverage of at least $100,000. In Missouri, UIM coverage is not mandatory, the manner in which this coverage applies is affected by the language in your insurance policy, which can be highly technical and subject to interpretation. Because this coverage is optional, insurers are freer to set limitation on UIM coverage than with your mandatory UM coverage. However, the ability to limit coverage can often be challenged depending on the insurance policy language as well as other factors. Consultation is highly advised in this complicated and highly technical area.

Have You Been Injured In A Kansas City Area Car Accident?

If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Kansas City office directly at 816.471.5111 to schedule your free consultation.

James Roswold
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James Roswold is a Kansas & Missouri personal injury, workers comp, and medical malpractice attorney.