Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage is supposed to do what you think: Pay for damages caused by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. Easy enough, right?


The big insurance companies push this type of insurance on Texas consumers. They use scare tactics to warn you that there are a lot of uninsured drivers out there and you could be “up a creek” if you don’t buy their uninsured motorist coverage to protect you against them. And they make a lot of money selling this stuff. It’s an easy policy add-on that puts quick money in their pockets.

The problem is, the insurance companies don't have any intention on paying you unless you haul them into court at your own expense.


Yes, a few years ago, the Texas Supreme Court decided to change the way the entire insurance world operates (i.e., you make a claim and your insurance company accepts or denies it). Instead, the Court said, you can’t even make a claim unless an actual judge in black robe says you can.

“A claim for UIM benefits is not presented,” the Court said in the 2006 case Brainard v. Trinity Universal Insurance Company, “until the trial court signs a judgment.”

This is like saying you can’t order your food until after you’ve eaten it. Or you can’t buy your house until after you’ve moved in. The Supreme Court basically re-wrote insurance and contract law (and basic logic) to say that you cannot have a cause until after the effect.

So all that stuff about protecting yourself from underinsured motorists? True, but you should really be worried about protecting yourself from fake insurance scams like uninsured motorist coverage in Texas.

"And," like Farmers says, "we don’t have to tell you, that usually means frustrating phone calls, four letter words, and maybe legal action."