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What You Need To Know About Medical Payments Coverage

When I was younger I always hated paying my insurance. The cost was always extremely high, and the people I interacted with were very rude. I always tried to get the bare minimum jan dilscoverage. It wasn’t until I was much older, and had spent some time working around personal injury attorneys, that I realized how wrong I was about insurance coverage. Though my car is 12 years old, paid for, and worth less than stock in Samsung, I still have full coverage on the car. I also carry high property damage coverage and high underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage. Though I’ve been proactive about my insurance, I’ve learned that it may not be enough. Recently I learned about Medical Payments coverage. It turns out that my current policy may still not be adequate.

Medical Payments coverage is a good supplement for many insurance policies because it is often affordable, and it can help pay for medical bills if you are injured in an accident. If you are hit by a driver with state minimum coverage, this could be even more beneficial because their insurance coverage likely won’t be enough to pay for your medical bills. It get’s better, though. Depending on your insurance provider, Medical Payments coverage may also cover the following:

  • Passengers in your car
  • Injuries sustained while you are walking or riding a bike
  • Prosthetics
  • If you’re injured as a passenger in another person’s car
  • Dental care
  • And more

In addition to providing coverage for medical bills, some Medical Payments coverage will also cover funeral costs. Once again, every provider is different, so it’s important to check your policy.

You may still be asking yourself if this is something you really need. Well, It can be helpful if you look at the numbers. If you are hit by a driver with perfect insurance coverage, then you are pretty lucky. However, the number of people who drive without insurance is staggering. It is as low as 4% in Maine and Massachusetts. However, that is much lower than the national average of 12% and far better than the worst state in the union, Oklahoma, at 26%. Nationally, there is a 1 in 8 chance that the person who hit you doesn’t have insurance.

Federal Help for DisabledSome may look at the numbers over the years and state that the average is trending downward. That’s true, but it’s not just uninsured motorists you have to worry about. Underinsured motorists are also an issue. There are a lot of cut-rate insurance providers currently. Many motorists will join these insurance providers because of cheap their coverage is, and how accessible they are for individuals with bad credit. In other words, there may be more people with insurance now then there was ten years ago, but many of these insured drivers have very little coverage.

If you’re intrigued by Medical Payments coverage, be sure to talk to your insurance provider about it. Most agents will agree that you want at least $25,000 worth of coverage. If you’ve been injured in an accident, call us today to learn more about the services we provide. Our consultation is free. Simply call 1-877-526-3457, If you can’t talk now, fill out this form so that we may call you at a better time.

 

 

Car Value Depreciation, and your Personal Injury Claim

When I was in college I drove a first generation off-red Dodge Neon. I loved the car. It was not the prettiest thing in the world, but it was fun to drive. As I owned this car during the height of the “Fast Furious” craze, I decorated it with neon lights, an aftermarket exhaust, and I even had a vanity plate that read “NeonJon.” The car was not without flaw. One day, on the way to my local mall, a lady hit me, and in the process killed NeonJon. So, it was time for a new car. The process of financing my first car took a lot longer than I expected. I eventually found a 2002 Kia Optima at a local dealer. I wasn’t in love with this car, but I was desperate, and it made a cool sound when I left the keys in the ignition. So, I bought it. In my haste to buy a new car I didn’t take the time to properly review the car’s actual value nor did I take the time to research the depreciation value. It turns out that this information was really important four months later when I totaled the car by hitting a tree on Valentine’s Day.

Like a good motorist, I called my insurance agent to let them know what was going on. A few weeks later I met with an accessor, and then the bad news came shortly after. My insurance provider, who was supposed to be on my side, would not cover the total cost of the vehicle. Further, I even purchased gap insurance through my lender, and that was not enough to cover the cost of the totaled Kia. I was lucky, though, I only had to pay $25 out of pocket to cover my car. Granted that was in 2006 dollars, and I was a poor college student, but still, I was lucky. This is not always the case. Most people won’t get away with paying fewer than $30 to cover the cost of their totaled car.

Here is a better example of how extreme this type of situation can be. Currently, the manufacturer on the market with the worst depreciation value is Nissan. There are several reasons that contribute to this, but one of the main factors is the number of cars that manufacturer makes. Nissan sells a lot of cars each year, and many of them are sold to fleets. This causes the value to depreciate quickly. Let’s say that in October of last year you purchased a new Nissan Rogue SL from your local dealer. Currently, the retail value of that car, per NADA, is $27,800. According to my local dealer, the price for an equivalent new model of this car (2017) is $33,835.  So, that car is worth $6,035 less than it was 6 months ago. Granted, in this example, you are buying this car with no money down, and no dealer or manufacturer incentives. While this is never recommended by lenders, many people still purchase vehicles this way.  If you total your vehicle, or if your hit by another motorist and the vehicle is a total loss, the insurance company is likely only going to pay you what the car is currently worth, or even less than that. Further, car financing is becoming unstable right now. More people are getting longer loans with higher interest rates than ever before. If you financed your Rouge at a high-interest rate for a long period of time, you could owe even more. Worst of all, you could be making payments on a car you don’t even own any longer.

So, what are you to do? One of the best things you can do is get GAP insurance on your car. While GAP may not cover the entire value of the car, in my situation listed above, the GAP insurance was the difference in me paying thousands for my totaled car, and just $25. Some lenders may require you to get GAP insurance when you finance the car. In this situation, it may be possible to finance the additional cost into your loan. However, not all lenders offer GAP. Your insurance provider may offer it to you when you register your new car.

Regardless of whether it’s your insurance company or the insurance company of the individual who hit your car, you don’t have to accept the offer that is made for the property damage. Do not cash the check until you are satisfied. Be sure to get your own estimates on the value of your car, and even get repair estimates. Some companies are quick to total a car, even when it is not beyond repair.

One of the smartest things you can do is to research the car you want to buy in detail before you sign the loan paperwork. You definitely don’t want to get upside down in a car loan. Try not to finance negative equity from a previous car. This can cause a lot of issues if you quickly total your new car. Also, look at residual values and see which cars depreciate the best. This is also true if you lease a car. You will likely get a better lease term if you choose a car with a high residual value. It’s also smart to put some money down on a car and finao make smart decisions and to be aware of what you’re getting yourself into with financing. Also, research your insurance company too. If you are hurt in an accident, be sure to give us a call to learn more about the services we provide. Our toll-free number is 1-877-526-3457. If you can’t talk now, fnce for a shorter term.

Buying a new car can be a lot of fun. However, it’s important till out this form so that we can call you at a better time.

The One That Got Away: How I Learned That All Insurance Agencies Aren’t the Same

Insurance is one of those things I really hate paying for each month until I have to use it. After being involved in a recent accident, I was really glad I was covered, Pi Photo Shoot 1 008and that my insurance company was willing to work with me to get my car fixed. I have been with the same insurance agent for most of my adult driving life. I have a local dealer that knows me by name, and they are a part of a large national insurance brand. Everything with them goes pretty well. It wasn’t until I was involved in a hit and run accident a few years back that I realized not all insurance companies are created equal.

Way back in the day, before I wrote blogs for a living, I worked in a small office selling satellite dishes. I just started graduate school, so I worked mostly in the evenings. This meant that I worked alone, and the office did not receive very much traffic at night. One day a young fella in a very large pickup truck stopped by our office to pay his bill. We talked about the weather briefly and genuinely had a nice conversation. It was just nice to have someone to talk to that day. I was alone for hours, and a friendly voice was just what I needed to make it through the rest of the night. As the customer left, he told me to “be careful out there,” and then he climbed into his truck.

Snow had fallen earlier in the day, and the parking lot was covered. As this person backed out of his parking spot, he smashed the throttle to make his vehicle break traction. This was fun for him, and I am sure he got some sort of enjoyment out of it…until he backed into my car. I watched it all unfold from my desk. When I walked into the parking lot, he became very irate and left the scene of the accident. In his mind, the action of him backing into my car was my fault. Though my car was clearly in an assigned spot, he was mad at me. Perhaps it was my fault for simply existing.

I had all of his information, so I called the police. I made an accident report, and did everything you’re supposed to do after an accident. Because I followed the rules I thought everything was going to be fine, but I was wrong.

Problems started a few days later when I contacted his insurance company. While I can’t name a specific brand, let’s just say his insurance company was cut rate at best. They would not return my calls, and they wouldn’t give me anything to cover the cost of the damage to my car. Eventually my insurance provider had to cover the accident under my under insured/uninsured policy. I remember thinking back then how thankful I was that I wasn’t in the car, and how I wasn’t injured. I can’t imagine trying to deal with a discount insurance company while injured. These people wouldn’t even pay for my fender; imagine if I had a broken leg.

While researching this blog I decided to do some investigating on underinsured and uninsured drivers. I was ignorant. I thought that all states required this type of coverage for their citizens. I couldn’t have been more wrong. In fact, I was so wrong, that I decided that my next blog will be all about this topic. Trust me; you will want to educate yourself on this subnect. I consider myself somewhat educated, and in under three minutes I was shocked out how little I knew. After this hit and run, I was glad that the state of West Virginia required me to have underinsured motorist coverage.

It’s important to remember that every insurance company is different. However, discount insurance companies often don’t have your best interest in mind. Even my well known insurance provider wasn’t able to get the other driver’s company to pay for the damage he did to my car. So, if you’re involved in something far more serious than an unoccupied fender bender, fighting the insurance company alone will be very difficult. That is why so many people turn to a Personal Injury Lawyer like Jan Dils to help them get the settlement they deserve. In fact, Jan will be the first to tell you that even the name brand insurance companies will try to undercut your injuries. While most modern insurance companies have fun commercials with likable spokespeople, we can’t forget that they are businesses, and their main purpose is to make money. Jan Dils has battled government and insurance giants for more than 20 years, and she knows how to get results.

If you’d like to know more about our personal injury services in West Virginia or Ohio, or if you’d like to talk about your case with a representative, call us today. Our toll free number is 1-877-526-3457. Or, fill out this form now to be contacted at a later time.