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Umbrella gives added protection against uninsured/underinsured motorists

Wednesday, October 6, 2021by  PEMCO Insurance

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​You bought your Umbrella policy in case you're ever responsible for a very serious accident. Now, your Umbrella policy can protect your family from other people's mistakes.

 As a PEMCO member, you can add an optional Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UIM) endorsement to your Umbrella policy. It safeguards your family from catastrophic-injury costs by paying you up to an extra $1 million after your auto policy's regular UIM limits have been exhausted. That's money you could use, for example, to replace lost wages, hire household assistants and pay for medical treatments, therapies and other expenses that your health plan can't.

GettyImages-1331281873.jpgBig protection, small price

You can boost your UIM protection by $1 million for only about $6 to $7.50 a month (the price varies slightly, depending on where you live). To qualify for the endorsement, the Bodily Injury and UIM limits on your auto policy must be $500,000 per person/$500,000 per accident. The optional endorsement to your Umbrella policy brings your total UIM protection to $1.5 million.

Still don't have Umbrella insurance? Maybe it's time

The idea behind Umbrella insurance is simple: It's a financial safety net that extends the liability protection you already have – not just for your car, but for your home, boat and other personal lines insurance, too. PEMCO members can add $1 to $5 million in Umbrella liability coverage to their insurance bundle. (Note: The optional UIM endorsement limit is $1 million even if you choose a higher limit for your Umbrella.)

Unlike insurance for your car (required by the state) and your home (required by lenders), Umbrella insurance is optional and, often, not well understood even by seasoned consumers. It stands between you and a costly legal judgment if you're sued and found responsible for damages greater than the liability limits of one of your regular insurance policies. It also pays defense costs, win or lose, if they exceed your underlying policy limits. If you visualize your insurance bundle like layer cake, with each of your policies represented by a layer, Umbrella would be like adding an extra layer of liability-only protection on top. It would kick in if the liability limits in any of the "layers" below had been exhausted. Because, thank goodness, it's not something that's needed often, rates are very affordable.

Financial advisers encourage consumers to create an insurance buffer high enough to protect both their current net worth (home equity, savings and more) and future earnings (from a high-compensation career path or anticipated inheritance) and to cover legal defense costs in a lawsuit. Often, parents add Umbrella coverage when their children start driving, since mile-for-mile, teens have the highest accident rates among all drivers.

To be eligible for PEMCO Umbrella coverage, you would need to have both your auto and home policies with PEMCO. On your auto policy, we require that you select liability limits of at least $250,000 per person/$500,000 per accident for Bodily Injury (BI) and $100,000 for Property Damage ($500,000 per person BI/UIM if you're also adding the UIM endorsement). Your home policy would need liability limits of at least $300,000. That $300,000 limit also applies to other personal insurance policies for which you'd like PEMCO Umbrella protection (such as boat, motorcycle and rental properties), even when those policies are with another company.

Find out more

Your local PEMCO agent or a representative at 1-800-GO-PEMCO can explain options and give you a quotation on Umbrella insurance or, if you already have it, help you add the UIM endorsement.

 

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