Mississippi has more uninsured drivers than any other state in the U.S. To keep yourself and your loved ones safe on our roads, be sure you are familiar with Mississippi underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage laws.
Uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) auto insurance exists to help you in the event you get in an accident with a driver who doesn’t have adequate vehicle insurance. If the other driver’s insurance policy isn’t sufficient to cover your losses, your UM/UIM coverage can kick in to make up the difference.
Corban Gunn, Attorney at Law will help break down the Mississippi underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage laws you need to know. Auto insurance policies can get complicated. If you were involved in a wreck with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, our car accident law firm can help.
We’ll meet with you for a free case evaluation to go over the details of your auto insurance policy. Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to file a car accident claim to recover money for medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. Speaking to an attorney before proceeding on your own can make a big difference in the outcome of your case. Call us with questions today.
UM/UIM Auto Insurance Laws in Mississippi
In a study published by the Insurance Research Council (IRC) in 2021, Mississippi had the highest percentage of uninsured drivers of any state in the country. It’s unclear exactly how many uninsured drivers travel our streets on any given day, but estimates suggest that as much as nearly 30% of vehicle owners regularly drive without insurance in Mississippi. Considering the national average is just 12.6%, a drastically high proportion of drivers in our state are uninsured.
Even when motorists do carry insurance, most only carry the state-mandated minimums:
- $25,000 per person
- $50,000 per accident
This is a relatively low amount of money when compared to the average cost of medical bills following a serious accident. A driver who causes a crash that results in damages of higher cost than their insurance coverage is known as an underinsured motorist.
We can use a common cause of accidents in Mississippi—texting and driving—to look at an example. If a motorist texts and drives, causing a distracted driving accident, they will likely be considered the at-fault party. That makes them liable for injuries and losses sustained by the other driver. Let’s say the other driver amasses $100,000 in medical bills. If the at-fault motorist only carries the minimum insurance requirements, it won’t be enough to cover the losses suffered by the other driver. This makes the at-fault party an underinsured motorist.
If you were the victim of a scenario like the one described above, your UIM coverage would work to fill the gap between your losses and the amount the other driver’s insurance policy can cover. Remember, UM/UIM coverage helps to protect you when another driver causes your accident. It doesn’t work to protect you from liability for an accident you caused.
Mississippi underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage is a huge benefit to many Mississippi drivers who are injured through the negligent actions of another motorist. Adding it to your auto insurance policy can save you a lot of trouble, worry, and expense in the long run.
Do You Have To Have Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Mississippi?
In a word, no, you do not need to carry uninsured motorist coverage in Mississippi. To opt-out, you only need to reject this type of coverage in writing when signing up for your auto insurance policy.
Mississippi underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage laws don’t require you to add UM/UIM coverage to your policy. However, the legal team of Corban Gunn, Attorney at Law highly recommends that all Mississippi drivers protect themselves with UM/UIM coverage. It is a relatively small cost for the value it can provide when needed.
Mississippi is also a state that allows you to “stack” UM/UIM insurance policies, in most cases. This is a good way for you to protect both yourself and your loved ones who are covered under the same auto insurance policy. Stacking multiplies the limits of your UM/UIM coverage by the number of vehicles covered under your policy. For example, you and your family may own two vehicles covered with UM/UIM limits of $50,000 per person and $75,000 per accident. You could then stack your UM/UIM coverage to $100,000 per person and $150,000 per accident if you are hurt by an uninsured or underinsured motorist.
What Does Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage Cover in Mississippi?
Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in Mississippi covers the losses you incurred as a result of your car accident. This may include:
- Cost of vehicle repair or replacement
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
For many accident victims, these costs add up faster than they can be paid off. It’s difficult to know things like:
- How much your medical expenses will amount to in total
- How long your car will take to be fixed
- How long you’ll be out of work
- How much your pain and suffering is worth in financial compensation
After you’ve suffered a serious injury, the last thing you want is to be stuck with the bills for someone else’s negligence.
Car accidents create countless questions, but the right car accident lawyer will always have the answers.
Get Qualified Legal Advice After a Mississippi Car Accident
Mississippi car accident victims have a strong advocate at the law firm of Corban Gunn, Attorney at Law. We want our clients to know their rights and to stand up for themselves when negligence threatens their physical health and financial security. If you have questions about Mississippi underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage laws, contact our office. We are happy to sit down and explore your legal options at no cost to you.