Whether or not an insurance company will make a payout on uninsured motorist (UM) and medical payments (MedPay) claims depends on several factors, including the terms of your insurance policy, the circumstances of the accident, and the evidence you provide to support your claim.
Uninsured Motorist (UM) Claims
Uninsured motorist coverage is designed to protect you if you are involved in an accident with a driver without insurance or insufficient insurance to cover your damages. When filing a UM claim, you seek compensation from your insurance company. Here’s what you need to know:
- Policy coverage: The first step is to review your insurance policy to ensure you have UM coverage. Recent changes in Virginia have caused some confusion regarding coverage, which is why working with a car accident attorney is important to ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
- Notification: You should promptly notify your insurance company about the accident, and the fact that the other driver involved is uninsured or underinsured.
- Proof of uninsured status: To support your UM claim, you will need to provide evidence that the other driver did not have valid insurance coverage at the time of the accident. This often involves obtaining a letter of denial or other documentation from the at-fault driver confirming their lack of insurance.
- Documentation of damages: Just as in any insurance claim, you will need to document your damages. This includes medical bills, repair estimates, property damage, and other relevant expenses from the accident.
- Proof of liability: While UM coverage is typically considered a “no-fault” insurance, meaning you can claim without proving the other driver’s fault, you may still need to demonstrate that the accident resulted from the uninsured driver’s negligence.
Medical Payments (MedPay) Claims
MedPay coverage is an optional insurance feature that pays for medical expenses incurred by you or your passengers in an accident, regardless of who is at fault. It can also extend to cover injuries sustained while you are a pedestrian or bicyclist. Here’s what you need to know about MedPay claims:
- Policy coverage: Like UM coverage, you should first check your insurance policy to see if you have MedPay coverage. This type of coverage is relatively straightforward and is typically less subject to disputes than other types of insurance claims.
- Notification: Notify your insurance company about the accident and your intention to file a MedPay claim as soon as possible. Be prepared to provide details about the accident and your medical treatment.
- Documentation: To support your MedPay claim, you will need to provide documentation of your medical expenses. This includes bills, receipts, and medical records related to the injuries sustained in the accident.
- Proof of eligibility: You may be required to prove that the medical expenses you are claiming are related to the accident. This can involve submitting medical records and statements from healthcare providers.
- No-fault nature: MedPay claims are typically considered “no-fault,” meaning you can make a claim regardless of who was at fault for the accident. Your insurance company should process your MedPay claim without requiring you to prove liability.
- Timely filing: Make sure to file your MedPay claim promptly. Insurance policies often have specific time limits for filing claims, and failing to meet these deadlines could result in a denial of your claim.
Generally, insurance companies are more likely to make a payout on MedPay claims because they involve covering medical expenses incurred due to an accident, and these expenses are usually straightforward to verify. However, it’s essential to understand the policy limits and the scope of coverage offered by your MedPay policy.