Uninsured and underinsured motorist protection provides coverage for insured drivers involved in a crash with uninsured or underinsured drivers. Although uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is required in Maryland motor vehicle policies, stacking uninsured motorist coverage is optional. Opting for stacked uninsured motorist coverage can benefit Maryland car accidents victims in the event of a crash, because stacking coverage can provide additional coverage beyond an insurance policy’s general policy limits.
Stacked uninsured motorist coverage is expansive and typically provides coverage whenever and wherever the insured is injured by an uninsured motorist. This means that an insured can stack or aggregate uninsured motorist coverage if the insured has multiple insurance policies. Non-stacked uninsured motorist coverage provides less protection and does not apply whenever and wherever the insured is injured. This means that it normally cannot be stacked or aggregated. Maryland’s Private Passenger Motor Vehicle Liability Insurance – Enhanced Underinsured Motorist Coverage law requires enhanced coverage to be offered under policies issued as of July 1, 2018. The law allows individuals covered on such policies to stack their uninsured motorist coverage.
A recent case from a state appeals court highlights the differences between stacked and non-stacked policies. In that case, the court found two individuals were not entitled to non-stacked uninsured motorist benefits where they had accepted stacked uninsured motorist benefits their policies with other insurers. Two individuals were injured when one of them was driving and was hit by another car that was driven by an uninsured motorist. The car was insured by a commercial auto policy in another individual’s name and provided non-stacked uninsured motorist coverage with a policy limit of $300,000. The two settled under the policy for $300,000. They also had three of their own insurance policies that provided uninsured motorist coverage. In addition, the parties settled under two of the other policies, which had provided stacked uninsured motorist coverage. The third policy insurer refused to pay because they had chosen non-stacked coverage.
The court found that under the non-stacking policy, the two individuals could not recover the policy limit for uninsured motorist coverage from the commercial policy because they had elected to recover uninsured motorist coverage from their own insurance policies. They did not own the car and were not insured under the vehicle’s policy. The court held that the two individuals could not stack non-stacked uninsured motorist benefits from the insurer on top of the stacked uninsured motorist benefits they had received from their own policies.
Contact a Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer
If you have been injured in a Maryland car accident, call the Maryland personal injury lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen, Personal Injury Lawyers. Our compassionate attorneys are proud to advocate for Maryland accident victims. Our team of legal advocates, staff, and experts has the resources and the tenacity to pursue all the parties that were responsible for causing your harm or loss. We will do all that we can to reduce the stress on you as much as possible and get your life back on track. To set up a free consultation regarding your personal injury claim, call us toll-free at 800-654-1949 or contact us online.