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Mix & Match: Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage and Other Available Insurance

September 3, 2014 By Jennifer A. King

The lawyers at DeCaro Doran get many questions concerning Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage.  There are many twists and turns in this confusing insurance policy provision.

Maryland law requires that a motor vehicle insurance policy provide protection for policy holders against damages caused by uninsured or underinsured motorists (“UM/UIM”).  Generally, UM/UIM coverages come into play where the bodily injury or death arising out of a motor vehicle accident exceeds the limits of liability of all other applicable insurance policies.  For example, the insured policy holder’s vehicle is rear-ended by another driver and the policy holder sustains bodily injury.  If the policy holder’s injuries and damages exceed the policy limits of the other driver’s liability insurance or if the other driver did not have insurance at all, then the policy holder may be entitled to UM/UIM benefits through her own insurance policy, i.e., the policy holder’s own UM/UIM policy coverage.

Now, let’s add another fact to the scenario – the policy holder was driving her employer’s vehicle and was working when the accident occurred.  Ordinarily, the policy holder would file a workers’ compensation claim arising out of this accident and receive workers’ compensation benefits.  Can the policy holder also file for UM/UIM benefits under her policy and recover twice for the same damages?  The answer is no.  Maryland Code provides that UM/UIM benefits are to be reduced to the extent the injured party receives workers’ compensation benefits for which the provider of the workers’ compensation benefits has not been reimbursed.  Therefore, if the policy holder receives $30,000 in workers’ compensation benefits and she has $100,000 in UM/UIM coverage under her insurance policy, her potential recovery under UM/UIM is reduced to $70,000.

The attorneys at DeCaro Doran are always available to answer your unique UM/UIM questions.