What is an Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage form, “UM form”?
The Louisiana Legislature provided that an insured’s automobile liability insurance policy will include uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage at the same limits as the bodily injury liability coverage in the policy unless the insured properly completes and signs a form prescribed by the Commissioner of Insurance rejecting, selecting lower limits, or selecting economic-only coverage. A properly completed and signed Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage Form (UM form) creates a rebuttable presumption that the insured knowingly rejected coverage, selected a lower limit, or selected economic-only coverage.
It is important to know the difference between the various selections. Initialing number 1 will give you UMBI coverage for limits lower than the bodily injury liability coverage that you maintain. For example, if you have bodily injury liability coverage of 100,000 then you can select UMBI coverage in the amount of 15,000; 25,000; 50,000 or so forth. If you don’t initial line 1 then you will have UMBI coverage in the amount of 100,000.
If you initial line 2, this will provide economic only UMBI coverage with the same limits as the Bodily Injury Liability Coverage indicated on your policy. For example, if you have a 25,000 bodily injury liability coverage policy then by initialing line 2 it will provide for 25,000 in economic only UMBI coverage. Economic UM will pay for medicals bills, but it will not pay for damages such as pain and suffering.
If you initial line 3, this will provide economic only UMBI coverage with limits lower than the bodily injury liability coverage limits indicated on your policy. This is similar to line 1 but it only provides for economic UMBI.
If you initial line 4, this will make it where you do not have any UMBI coverage.
My personal preference and suggestion are to have uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage as the same limits as that of your bodily injury liability coverage. I do not recommend economic only UMBI coverage. If your insurance carrier provides for medical payment coverage that is a far better choice than selecting economic only UMBI coverage.
The minimum required insurance to carry on a vehicle in Louisiana is 15,000. Therefore, having an adequate underinsured motorist bodily injury policy on your vehicle can make a big difference if you are injured in a motor vehicle accident.