The aptly named “umbrella” insurance offers extended protection for you and your family in case civil liabilities “rain” metaphorically. For example, if you or a family member (such as a child) runs a red light and runs over a pedestrian, you will likely be liable for any resulting injuries. The injured person’s medical bills lost wages, and personal injury damages may exceed your liability insurance limits (or you may not even have liability coverage since it’s not required in Florida at all).
Without an “umbrella” insurance policy, you could be liable for any damage beyond what your auto insurance will pay for. If you have an “umbrella” insurance policy, it will begin to cover the costs once you reach the limit of your auto insurance policy.
An “umbrella” insurance policy is one of those things you hope you’ll never need, but in certain situations, you’ll be relieved to have. They are also not very expensive for most people. Since the “umbrella” insurance policy is a last resort, claims are relatively rare, especially compared to other insurance claims. Therefore, “umbrella” insurance premiums are usually reasonable.
What does an “umbrella” insurance policy mean for personal injury claimants?
An “umbrella” insurance policy could be very convenient for a personal injury claimant for several reasons. For one thing, he will have access to much more money, which is vitally important if the injuries he suffered are serious or catastrophic.
A driver in Florida may not carry any auto liability insurance since it is technically not required by law. You could run out of funds if your PIP limits are too low to cover all your damages. If it turns out that the driver or person who caused your injuries has an “umbrella” liability insurance policy, they could recover much more.
You may also have an easier time finding a personal injury lawyer who will take your case if the negligent party has “umbrella” insurance.
Lawyers do not work for free. Most injury attorneys will tell you, “you don’t pay unless we win,” which is true, but it’s not the whole story.
Since the attorney will only get paid if they win, personal injury lawyers tend to accept only cases where they are confident that the eventual settlement or payment of the claim will justify their investment of time and effort.
For example, if your entire claim is only $5,000, and the attorney takes 30%, you will win $1,500. If the case takes them and their team 24 hours of work, their $1,500 cut may not adequately cover their expenses. However, suppose the person who injured you has a million-dollar policy, and his injuries warrant paying a six-figure claim. In that case, your case could present a lucrative opportunity for the attorney.
Personal injury law is not just about money. Many personal injury attorneys genuinely care about the well-being of their clients, but they also need to pay their bills and staff. You are more likely to attract the best Florida injury lawyers when there is at least a good chance they can benefit from your case. Insurance “umbrellas” make it more likely.
Does “umbrella” insurance extend to my family and cover all kinds of injuries?
Yes. If your precocious teen, who likes to cause trouble on social media, is sued for defamatory comments, they will be covered by your “umbrella” insurance. These policies generally cover your entire family and yourself against all liability.
However, “umbrella” insurance will not cover you in business liability cases, even if you run your business from home and are a sole proprietor. It also does not cover intentional or criminal damage. If you or a household member injures someone during an assault and the injured person sues you, your “umbrella” insurance will not cover the damages.
What is the difference between “umbrella” insurance and a comprehensive coverage policy?
Umbrella insurance covers you and your home for many things, from car accident injuries to premises liability cases. The comprehensive coverage policy is usually an extension of a specific insurance policy. For example, purchasing a comprehensive auto insurance policy will only give you additional liability coverage for bodily injury or property damage that you cause in a car accident. It would not affect a premises liability claim against your homeowner’s policy.
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