Written by attorney John J Flanagan


How too for success in uncovering coverage under Under-insured/Uninsured Motorist Coverage.

Additional resources provided by the author

PITFALLS: One critical element in asserting under-insured coverage is that you must receive the consent of your own insurance company to settle before accepting the policy from the first insured. This is done by letter and allows your own provider to review the financial affairs of the negligent driver to determine if they may have grater assets. Theoretically your insurance company could seek to pursue the first insured. It is usually a highly unlikely scenario but failure to insure the consent could bar further under-insured recovery. If more than two vehicles are involved or more than one insurance policy may be responsible for the liability causing your injury then apportionment of those policies may ultimately be an issue. Before receiving consent of your own insurance company to settle, liability among those insurance providers must first be determined. The decisions of the Rhode Island Supreme Court in Butie v. Norfolk and Dedham Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 995 A 2d 546 (R.I. 2010), Hindson v. Allstate, 694 A2d 682 (R.I. 1997), and Brown v. Travelers Ins. Co., 610 A 2d 127 (R.I. 1992) would require a pro-rata apportionment of those policies as to excess under-insurance. Injured drivers should be aware of their own rights under contracts they have paid for before settling with the opposing drivers insurance company; risking an unsatisfactory. recovery. Clients should be counseled to elect sufficient UM coverage which is affordable under most policies. state statutory references should be consulted before settlement.

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