Dec 282008
 

--Photo: Photo by Hans van de Bruggen--

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that more and more drivers are letting their insurance lapse or reducing their coverage as the economy sours. As you are driving, what are the chances that the guy coming up behind you does not have insurance? By not having insurance he not only is putting himself at risk, he also may be putting you at risk. What can you do?

Insurance companies in Washington state, like most states, are required to offer uninsured motorist coverage. In some states the coverage is mandatory, Washington requires that the coverage be offered but allows the policy holder to reject the coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage protects those in the vehicle just like the the uninsured driver had coverage. If you or a family member is hurt in an accident, if they loose an arm or a leg, or worse, your uninsured motorist coverage will cover you. If you do not have uninsured motorist coverage, you only have yourself to blame.

Several hundred thousand drivers dropped their insurance in the past year as the jobless rate climbed, estimates a study to be released next month by the Insurance Research Council, an industry-funded group. Online agency Insurance.com says it also is seeing evidence recently of more uninsured motorists. It says that as many as 40% of callers following up on online applications had let their previous policies lapse, up from less than 10% a couple years ago.

If you do not have uninsured motorist coverage, talk to your agent.

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