It is important to ensure that you have sufficient uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage called “SUM Coverage” on your own auto insurance policy. SUM stands for Supplementary Uninsured Motorist although it applies to underinsured motorists as well. This category of coverage protects you in the event that you are injured by a vehicle or driver that is not insured or has insufficient insurance to compensate you for your injuries. Many people do not realize that your own SUM coverage is a very affordable way to protect yourself and your family if one of you later becomes injured in an accident.
The limits on your SUM endorsement can be as high as your bodily injury limits (which is the category of insurance that can be available to a person who is injured in an accident caused by you), but only if you request that and pay an additional premium. The premium is generally not expensive, and it is surprising how little additional you need pay to increase your limits. Agents and insurance companies often do not volunteer this information.
New York law requires insurance companies to allow their insureds to purchase “supplemental spousal liability insurance.” This endorsement allows one spouse to recover against the other in the event that the insured’s spouse is injured in a car accident that is the fault of the insured. (E.g. You cause a car accident with your wife as your passenger, and your wife is injured. She could then recover money from the policy.) This is another example of coverage that is not generally explained to people when purchasing insurance, but, is available, and should seriously be considered.