Understanding UM/UIM Coverage: Essential Protection for Texas Drivers

When you’re involved in a car accident, the aftermath can be overwhelming, especially if the at-fault driver lacks adequate insurance coverage. This is where Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) coverage comes into play. At Ryan Orsatti Law, we specialize in plaintiff personal injury law in Texas, and we believe it’s crucial for every driver to understand the importance of UM/UIM coverage.

What is UM/UIM Coverage?

UM/UIM coverage is a type of insurance that protects you if you’re involved in an accident with a driver who either has no insurance or insufficient insurance to cover the damages. In Texas, while drivers are required to have liability insurance, many still drive uninsured or underinsured, leaving others vulnerable.

Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage

UM coverage provides protection if you are hit by a driver who does not have any insurance. It covers medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other costs related to the accident.

Underinsured Motorist (UIM) Coverage

UIM coverage kicks in when the at-fault driver’s insurance is not enough to cover all your expenses. For example, if your damages total $50,000 and the at-fault driver’s insurance only covers $30,000, UIM coverage can help bridge the gap.

Why is UM/UIM Coverage Important in Texas?

Texas has a high rate of uninsured drivers. According to the Texas Department of Insurance, approximately 20% of drivers in Texas are uninsured. This makes UM/UIM coverage an essential part of your auto insurance policy, ensuring that you are not left paying out-of-pocket for someone else’s negligence.

How Does UM/UIM Coverage Work?

When you are in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you can file a claim with your own insurance company under your UM/UIM coverage. This process involves:

  1. Filing a Police Report: Always report the accident to the police. This report will be crucial for your insurance claim.
  2. Notifying Your Insurance Company: Inform your insurer about the accident and that you need to file a UM/UIM claim.
  3. Medical Documentation: Keep detailed records of your medical treatments and expenses.
  4. Claim Evaluation: Your insurer will evaluate the claim, considering the extent of your damages and the other driver’s insurance coverage (if any).

Texas Law on UM/UIM Coverage

Under Texas law, insurers are required to offer UM/UIM coverage when you purchase auto insurance. However, you can reject this coverage in writing. At Ryan Orsatti Law, we strongly advise against rejecting UM/UIM coverage due to the financial protection it offers.

For more detailed information on Texas insurance requirements, you can visit the Texas Department of Insurance website.

Real-Life Scenarios Where UM/UIM Coverage Saves the Day

Consider a scenario where you’re hit by a driver who flees the scene (hit-and-run) or by someone with minimal insurance. Without UM/UIM coverage, you could be left facing significant medical bills and repair costs. With UM/UIM coverage, your insurance can cover these expenses, providing peace of mind and financial security.


UM/UIM coverage is a vital part of your auto insurance policy in Texas. It provides essential protection against the financial impact of accidents involving uninsured or underinsured drivers. At Ryan Orsatti Law, we specialize in helping victims of car accidents navigate the complexities of personal injury claims. If you have any questions or need assistance with a claim, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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By understanding and utilizing UM/UIM coverage, you can ensure that you and your loved ones are protected on the road.