What is an underinsured motorist claim in Connecticut?  

An underinsured motorist claim in Connecticut is a first-party insurance claim for injuries caused by an underinsured motorist.  It is claim against your own insurance company.  Not all car accident cases end up as underinsured motorist cases.  Here is the background.

In Connecticut, people are required to carry automobile insurance.  It is the public policy of Connecticut to require every drive to carry insurance.  This is to protect the public from deadbeat drivers who might cause car accidents and injuries without the means to compensate the injured parties for their harms and losses. 

While the State of Connecticut requires all people to carry automobile insurance, they don't requrie people to carry enough.  The minimum permitted is only $20,000 worth of insurance. That is not enough insurance to cover many losses.  

So, how do you protect yourself?

So, how to your protect yourself from being seriously injured by someone who drives around with only $20,000.00 worth of insurance?  If that person injures you, then you can sue them, and they will have $20,000 in coverage, but after that $20,000 is used up, then there is no more insurance.  If fair compensation for your injuries exceeds the $20,000 of insurance available, then you can bring an undersinured motorist claim against your own insurance company provided you carry enough underinsured motorist injurance.  The rule is that your underinsured motorist coverage must exceed the amount available from the person who is primarily liable (the person who caused the crash).  In this example, assume a car accident in Groton, Connecticut, and assume the person who caused the crash has only $20,000 worth of insurance from Allstate Insurance.  Next, assume that you have $150,000 in damages.  Also, assume that you have $100,000 in underinsured motorist insurance from Geico insurance.  In this example, you would be able to collect $20,000 from the tortfeasor, and you would also collect another $80,000 from your underinsured motorist policy.  In this example, they get a credit off of their coverage for the amount received from the tortfeasor.  That is an underinsured motorist claim.

Where to find help?

If you believe you have suffered a serious injury in a car accident, then you might have a Connecticut underinsured motorist case.  If you need help, contact underinsured motorist lawyers at The Bartinik Law Firm, P.C. 100 Fort Hill Road, Groton, Connecticut at 860-445-8521 or toll free at 888-717-4211.


Peter J. Bartinik, Jr.
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Civil Trial Attorney, Practicing Law in Connecticut