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Options if you’re visiting from out of state and get injured in a wreck.

Herrman & Stratso talk about your options if you're visiting from out of state and get injured in a wreck.


Gregory Herrman: Alright well, hello everybody, welcome once again to frequently asked questions writing. Today we have Steven Stratso, again back with us, we're gonna try to keep this real short, we just have one question and that question is, what happens if you're visiting from out of state and get injured in Texas, let's say in a car? What are the potential issues that might arise?

Steven: Well each state kind have different coverage, mainly different minimum coverage, so the question would be does your car insurance policy follow you to that state? And the general answer to that is yes, that it does, you know sometimes you're coming from a state with lower limits, you're at fault and so the person that you hit can actually recover to the Texas state minimum, that one situation, so the general answer is yes it does cover you, but of course you always want to check your policy.

Gregory: Before yeah, so like I think Arizona only has a fifteen thousand dollar per person minimum 30 thousand dollar policy as opposed to Texas where we have thirty sixty. So, if I live in Arizona and I've got fifteen dollars in our policy and I come over here and I injure somebody, you tell me my insurance company has to pay $30,000 even though I only paid a premium for getting coverage for 15th?

Steven: If you're at fault it seems like the general answer is yes, you know it's going to make up that difference, the only time that it typically wouldn't follow is under your UM/UIM because you've just been paying for that premium the entire time, so that's kind of where it would work out a little bit different for you.

Gregory: If you are not at fault you may claim on your UM policy and you were from say Arizona with fifty thousand policy, you're saying then you can only recover the minimum which is 15.

Steven: According to you know it's going to be different with all policies and you'd have to check the policy language on them, but it typically is only going to cover what you've been paying that premium.

Gregory: Well but go back to the liability issue, you've all been paying a premium for 15 thousand. I mean isn't that contractual too? Then they will come to just say hey you didn't pay us for 30 or 50, you paid us for 15 and that's all we got to do.

Steven: The car insurance companies they actually refer to this as the broadening clause and they'll typically you know cover the excess on that, because we went to this other place, now there are situations where if you move to another state and you haven't read up your policy and haven't notified, hey I moved so things will be a little bit different, then it's not going to follow you, so if you move you definitely want to get in touch with your insurance company let them know about that.

Gregory: So since you move they're gonna say what we don't have to provide the 30, now because you didn't tell us you move.

Steven: Well what they're gonna say is you haven't been paying the premium in that state, so we have an obligation or duty under the contract to honor it.

Gregory: If you don't live here they gotta pay 30 but if you do live here then it's 50.

Steven: You gotta let them know, yeah um again, you want to check the policy language as well, each insurance company is different what you pay for is different, you read that in their policy.

Gregory: So let's say that happens and somebody moves here they don't tell the insurance, the insurance is growing it gives you $15,000 worth of coverage who's gonna pay that extra say 15,000.

Steven: If you're at fault, hopefully, the other drivers have got to pay for that. We see it all the time, that's why it's so important to have that full coverage dependent work.

Gregory: Would our situation work with an out-of-state driver for an out-of-state policy?

Steven: You know honestly I haven't seen a whole lot of those so that would be a good one definitely research, Stowers in Texas obviously we use them all the time. I'm not sure which specific situation.

Gregory: And for the viewers, the Stowers situation is just where you tell the insurance company you're claiming obviously worth way more so they better pay up as if they don't then in a reasonable adjustment would have paid up.

Gregory: Okay now what if the out-of-state drivers say they are from New York or something where they got on fifty thousand dollar policy or a hundred thousand and that person comes down here and either get injured or causes an accident in Texas when I had thirty sixty what happens?

Steven: Well in that situation their policy would generally still apply I wouldn't go down I'd say they're paying for that that coverage you know so they don't want to be exposed you know possibly potentially getting sued when they've been paying this higher premium so that would still follow.

Gregory: okay all right well any other issues that would come up somebody from out of state?

Steven: You know I'm sure there's plenty of them but I think we only have limited time here today.

Gregory H. Herrman has been committed to providing quality legal representation for injured accident victims in the Corpus Christi area and the Rio Grande Valley for many years. After getting his J.D., Herrman joined a firm in Corpus Christi, handling both plaintiff’s personal injury and insurance defense cases. After five years, he joined his brother, David, and another attorney to form their own law firm committed solely to representing injured accident victims. Herrman has maintained that focus in his practice ever since.