The recently signed legislation strengthens the penalties for causing bodily harm in a car crash while driving uninsured
Online PR News – 29-September-2011 – – A new Illinois law that stiffens penalties for uninsured motorists highlights the importance of being insured against damages caused by drivers who have no coverage, according to Online Auto Insurance (OAI).
Residents of Illinois and a number of other states require drivers to be insured for these types of situations, but motorists in other parts of the country should strongly consider uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) when checking out free car insurance quotes to decide what policy is right for them, OAI advises.
Almost every state requires that drivers carry auto coverage, but 1 in 7 drivers nationwide were uninsured insured in 2009, according to estimates from the Insurance Research Council (IRC). The risk of encountering one of those drivers could make it worthwhile to purchase coverage that includes UM/UIM protection.
UM/UIM policies, which are optional in most states, are meant to protect consumers in the event they get into an accident caused by a driver who has no coverage or low liability limits that are not enough to pay for all injuries or damages. They also cover damages caused by hit-and-run drivers in many cases.
Prices for UM/UIM protection vary between states, depending in large part on state-specific claims history.
The IRC has estimated that 15 percent of Illinois drivers were uninsured in 2009.
The new state law mandates that motorists who cause bodily injury in a car crash while driving uninsured and have previously been convicted two or more times for driving without coverage will face a $2,500 fine in addition to other penalties.
Motorists are required by law to carry uninsured driver coverage in 20 states and the District of Columbia, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III).
No-fault laws that are on the books in a dozen states typically allow victims of accidents caused by uninsured drivers to collect benefits from their own coverage providers. But the III advises residents of those states to pay a little extra for the added layer of financial protection that is provided by UM/UIM coverage.
To learn more about this and other safety and coverage issues, readers can go to www.onlineautoinsurance.com/quotes/free/ target="_blank" class="highlight_link">http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/quotes/free/ where they will find informative resource pages and a helpful rate-comparison generator.