Although drivers throughout Illinois are required to carry liability auto insurance to cover personal injuries and property damage, approximately 13% of motorists in the state remain uninsured. Additionally, many drivers only carry the minimum coverages required, which is not generally enough to cover medical bills and lost wages that result from a severe car accident. Since crash victims rely on insurance payments to cover their losses, the lack of sufficient liability insurance can make recovery difficult. Accident attorney Kenneth A. Fishman has provided victims of uninsured or underinsured motorist crashes with legal solutions that enable them to recover compensation for their losses.
If you were injured by an uninsured or underinsured motorist in Illinois, call accident lawyer Kenneth A. Fishman at 312-346-8990 for a free consultation.
Car Accident Liability Insurance in Illinois
Liability insurance coverage is designed to pay for personal injuries and property damage the at-fault driver causes to others. Your own liability insurance policy will not cover your own injuries or property damage, however. If the other driver is at fault, his or her liability insurance policy covers your injuries and other losses.
Mandatory Minimum Auto Insurance Requirements
Illinois motor vehicle drivers are required to carry minimum amounts of liability insurance coverage. These policies are split into two categories.
- Bodily Injury (BI): In Illinois, motorists are required to carry limits of at least $25,000 in BI coverage per person, per accident, and a minimum of $50,000 in coverage total per accident. The coverage pays for injuries or death to pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists, other drivers, and passengers of the other vehicle. It may also cover passengers in your own vehicle as long as they do not live with you.
- Property Damage (PD): Illinois law requires motorists to carry minimum coverage limits of at least $20,000 for damage to another person’s property. This may include a person’s vehicle, fencing, landscaping, signs, and buildings.
Since most newer vehicles are worth more than $20,000 and personal injuries can easily escalate to well over $25,000, liability insurance coverage is typically not enough to cover victims’ losses in severe car crashes. And although the Illinois Secretary of State began the Electronic Liability Insurance Verification program in 2020 that verifies coverage twice a year for vehicles registered in the state, many motorists continue to drive uninsured. Fortunately, additional types of insurance coverage exist to help injured victims recover compensation for their losses.
- Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage (UIM): This type of coverage is required for Illinois drivers who purchase policies with higher uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage limits. UIM covers the difference between the at-fault driver’s liability insurance limits and your UIM limits. For instance, if your injuries total $50,000 and the at-fault driver only carries the minimum $25,000 in liability coverage, you may be able to recover the remaining amount from your own UIM policy.
- Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage (UM): Insurance companies in Illinois are required to provide uninsured motorist coverage with every policy. UM covers your personal injuries if you are hit by an uninsured driver or you are the victim of a hit and run accident. Currently, Illinois law requires minimum coverage limits of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per crash. You may purchase policies with higher limits, however, to cover car accident injuries and losses that exceed these limits.
- Accidental Death: Accidental death benefits are paid to survivors if the insured person is killed in a motor vehicle crash.
- MedPay: This type of insurance pays for medical expenses if you or your passengers are injured in a car accident. When you have a MedPay policy, you and your family members are covered if you are in a pedestrian accident, hit by a car while riding a bicycle, or injured as a passenger in another vehicle. The coverage also pays for funeral expenses if someone is killed. MedPay even covers injuries that occur when you are at fault.
Were You Injured In a Car Accident with an Uninsured or Underinsured Driver?
While filing an uninsured or underinsured car accident claim against your own insurance policy and recovering compensation may seem straightforward, that is often not the case. Insurance companies are in the business of making money and they frequently look for ways to minimize payouts or deny valid injury claims. Injury attorney Kenneth A. Fishman is experienced with uninsured and underinsured motorist accident claims in Chicago, and our law firm can help ensure that you recover appropriate compensation for your losses. When you retain our services we will:
- Gather evidence to determine the cause of your crash
- Obtain medical records and documentation of your injuries
- Determine the value of your accident-related losses
- Negotiate with the insurance company to secure a satisfactory settlement
- File a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf if negotiations are unsuccessful
Additionally, if your insurance company denies your claim in bad faith, our team may be able to help you recover compensation that far exceeds your insurance policy limits.