Uninsured motorists pose numerous potential threats to other drivers, as any damage or injuries they cause on the roadways is not covered. Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage is optional in the state of Oklahoma, but there are a lot of reasons why all Oklahomans should opt-in. In the event you are an Oklahoma resident involved in a car accident that was caused by another driver who does not have insurance, you could be faced with paying your own medical and auto repair bills – unless you have UM coverage. Because UM coverage is optional in Oklahoma, we often field calls from people who would have legitimate cases if only they hadn’t opted out of UM. Unfortunately, many cases are not eligible to be taken to court or pursued legally, simply because the individual decided against UM insurance.
When signing up for an insurance policy in Oklahoma, you must sign something saying you are declining UM coverage. It costs a little bit extra, so people opt out to save a few extra dollars. In the end, it is a poor decision to not have UM insurance. While we all hope to never be involved in a car accident – especially with someone who does not have insurance – the chances of this happening are much higher than you may think. In order to protect yourself and your loved ones, we strongly encourage you to opt into UM insurance in Oklahoma.
According to Oklahoma’s Insurance Commissioner, our state leads the nation in the percentage of uninsured drivers, with an estimated 600,000. This is a shocking statistic, to say the least. Even though the dangers of driving without insurance are widely known, this is something that all too many Oklahomans do. Insurance agencies and the Department of Public Safety are working together to try and educate the public about why driving without insurance is such a bad idea, but many people still choose to take this risk.
You may be asking yourself – what does it mean to be under or uninsured, exactly? For starters, drivers who are either under or uninsured may not have liability limits that are high enough to cover bills after an accident, or the liability limits are less than or equal to a given underinsured motorist coverage limit. This can lead to numerous issues, as you can imagine. There are just five states in the U.S. that require all drivers to have UM – Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Vermont. Drivers in these states carry much heavier protection, which comes in handy in many car accident scenarios.
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For responsible drivers who do not carry UM, it may be time to rethink your reasoning behind this. UM coverage does not cost a lot more and can save you thousands, in the event you are involved in a car accident with a driver who does not carry insurance. Again, because UM insurance is optional in Oklahoma, many drivers think they do not need it. However, this decision is a huge mistake. With more than half a million drivers taking to the roadways in Oklahoma without insurance every single day, it is important that responsible drivers take matters into their own hands and carry UM. Please feel free to contact us for more information on the importance of UM and what can happen to you if you do not carry it, and are involved in a car accident with an uninsured driver.