What is a "setoff" when dealing with an underinsured claim after the initial wrong doer's insured Co. pays their insured's limit

Asked over 1 year ago - Cleveland, OH

I suffered a broken wrist in a car accident while in Vegas (Aug 2011) and continue to experience tendon issues. Bills have totaled out to $22k, but I may need surgery. I demanded $50k due to bills, pain and suffering and lost wages. The liable insured only had $15k limit in CA. I was paid the $15k and recently spoke with an attny to handle the underinsured claim with my personal insurance. The attny tells me that there would be a $15k setoff, meaning that my maximum recovery would be $10k. Why wouldn't my add'nl uninsured motorist coverage of $25k be considered in addition to the $15k already received? Can someone explain this? Is there an Ohio attny interested in helping me finalize this claim at 25% contingency? Thanks!

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Michael Lewis Eisner

    Contributor Level 11

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Ohio allows "anti-stacking" provisions in underinsured motorist setting. Generally, the amounts that are available from the wrongdoer's (also known as a tortfeasor) policy is subtracted from the underinsured motorist policy. There are also other pitfalls to settling with the tortfeasor directly. Usually, it is required that you seek permission to settle from your own carrier, and provide them with the opportunity to advance the offer if they want to pursue the tortfeasor after paying you. I strongly recommend you consult with an before signing any release.

  2. David Allen Herman Jr.

    Contributor Level 10

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I'd be happy to discuss your case with you, including your UIM policy. You can reach me at 216-694-5209.

  3. Lars A. Lundeen

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You are being offered this amount of money because that is what your insurance policy provides. You should read your uninsured/underinsured motorist portion of your policy and you will understand exactly what is going on. You cannot collect more money than you bargained for. Obviously, you were seriously underinsured at the time of this collision. You always should try to buy as much underinsured motorist coverage as you can afford.

    Legal Disclaimer:

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

    Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.

    This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.
  4. George Costas Andriotis

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . There are various set offs one of which is the at fault parties insurance coverage.

    Call for a free consultation at 727-937-1400 or visit us on the Web at www.serviceandjustice.com.
  5. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I'm sure any one of the above lawyers in your state would help you resolve, so contact one.

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