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Making Uninsured Motorist Coverage Pay First Dollar

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Here is an interesting legal secret that I have done for clients. In Oklahoma, you can make your uninsured/underinsured motorist carrier pay first in a car wreck or trucking wreck. This is often faster than dealing with the negligent parties insurance and can at times pay more since your UM carrier has a good faith duty to you, its insured.

36 Okla. Stat. § 3636 specifically states that “for the purposes of this coverage the term “uninsured motor vehicle” shall also include an insured motor vehicle, there liability limits of which are less than the amount of the claim of the person or persons making such claim, regardless of the amount of coverage of either of the parties in relation to each other.” Oklahoma law provides that the uninsured motorist statute mandates that when preconditions for loss under uninsured motorist coverage exist, an uninsured motorist coverage carrier is obligated to pay entire loss of its injured insured from the first dollar up to the policy limits and obligation exists regardless of whether tort-feasor’s vehicle is uninsured or underinsured. Burch v. Allstate Ins. Co., 1998 OK 129, 977 P.3d 1057. Further, in this instance any subrogation right has not been destroyed, thus State Farm is directly and primarily liable to its insured for the entire loss to be indemnified. Burch v. Allstate Ins. Co., 1998 OK 129, 977 P.3d 1057.

If you have UM and have been hurt in a car accident, your insurance company owes a duty to you to indemnify you for you loss in the accident. It has a duty to pay the entire loss regardless of whether your insurance company views the tort-feasor as underinsured.

There is a little bit more too it, which is why you should hire a personal injury lawyer. That said, its very effective and I have found that my clients have been very satisfied when we take this route.