If you have been injured in a car accident, you are entitled to recover for your injuries. This is true whether the driver was a friend, an acquaintance, or even a family member. It is also true whether you are in a multiple car crash, or a single car accident.
Understanding Car Insurance
Three types of car insurance are normally found in Alaska. They are:
- Liability insurance;
- Uninsured and underinsured motorists (often referred to as UIM); and
- Medical Payments (MedPay).
An experienced Alaska personal injury attorney will review the coverage carried by the driver and all passengers to determine the best avenue for recovery after a wreck.
Liability Bodily Injury Insurance
Alaska drivers are required to maintain at least 50/100 ($50K per person, up to $100K per incident) of liability insurance. This insurance normally covers the insured against “loss from the liability imposed by law for damages that arise from the ownership, maintenance, or use of a designated motor vehicle.” It also normally insures against loss “imposed by law for damages that arise from use by the operator of a motor vehicle not owned by the operator.” In other words, liability insurance covers named insured and all those operating the insured vehicle with the owner’s permission.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Most drivers also carry uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. This is a low cost insurance policy that protects drivers who are hit by people who violate the law requiring liability insurance. It can also provide coverage when there is a hit and run accident.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage normally extends to all occupants of the insured vehicle, including family members. It is also personal. That means your U/UIM insurance covers you whether you are in your own car, or not. Alaskan case law provides that U/UIM insurance even covers people who are hurt by uninsured/underinsured motorists while “on a pogo stick.”
“Med Pay” is short for “Medical Payments.” It refers to coverage found in car insurance policies that pays medical expenses of both the person insured and the passengers who were injured in the accident. Med Pay covers injuries regardless of who caused the accident. Med Pay is another low cost insurance option that covers all occupants in a vehicle who have been injured in an accident. Like U/UIM coverage, MedPay is personal. It normally covers you and your family when you are in another person’s car – walking along a street – or on a pogo stick in Australia.
If You Have Been Injured
If you have been injured in a car accident, even if it was a single car crash, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. This can include lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering. Having an Alaska personal injury attorney who understands the ins and outs of the Alaska court system is essential. Our attorneys will review your case at no cost.
Some people are uncomfortable with the thought of suing another family member. Fortunately, Alaskan law provides for a way around that problem. At Merdes Law Office, P.C., we understand the purpose of insurance is to protect your family from catastrophic medical bills, regardless of who is at fault. Contact our office to meet with our highly experienced and reputable Alaska personal injury attorney to discuss your case: 907.452.5400 or visit www.merdes.com for further information.