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Thursday, March 7, 2024
Posted in Car Accidents

Understanding what sum coverage is and recognizing its importance can significantly impact your financial security following an accident. Sum coverage, or Supplementary Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage, provides an essential safety net that extends beyond the limits of the at-fault party’s insurance, offering you and your family additional protection.

In a world where unexpected events can lead to unforeseen expenses, securing sum coverage ensures that you’re prepared for any scenario on the road.

Understanding Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Accidents happen, and unfortunately, not every driver on the road carries adequate insurance. In the event of an accident caused by a driver with no insurance (uninsured) or insufficient insurance (underinsured), the financial consequences can be overwhelming. This is where Supplemental Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (SUM) coverage provides an invaluable layer of financial protection.

What is SUM Coverage?

SUM coverage is an optional addition to your auto insurance policy, designed to bridge the gap between the at-fault driver’s liability limits and your actual damages. If their insurance cannot fully cover your medical bills, lost wages, or other expenses, SUM coverage can kick in to compensate you up to your chosen policy limits.

What is Underinsured Motorist Coverage?

In New York, Uninsured motorist coverage is an optional component of auto insurance that steps in when you are involved in an accident with a driver who has no insurance or flees the scene before their identity can be ascertained. Underinsured motorist coverage steps in when you’re involved in an accident with a driver who lacks enough insurance to cover your damages. In essence, it’s like an added layer of protection that bridges the gap between what the other driver’s insurance can pay and the actual cost of your damages.

How Does SUM Coverage Work?

Here’s a simplified example: You’re driving through an intersection, and another driver runs a red light, hitting your car. The accident is bad, and you are severely injured – your life is forever changed. However, the at-fault driver only carries $25,000 in liability coverage. Your damages exceed the $25,000 of liability coverage, and the person who hit you has no assets.  

Without underinsured motorist coverage, you might be stuck with the $25,000. But if you have underinsured motorist coverage with a limit higher than $25,000, your policy could kick in to cover the difference, up to the limits of your policy.

Benefits of Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Supplemental Underinsured Motorist (SUM) coverage offers a multitude of benefits, making it a wise investment in your financial well-being and peace of mind.

Here’s a closer look at its key advantages:

  • Essential Financial Safeguard: SUM coverage acts as a crucial safety net when an at-fault driver lacks adequate insurance to cover your damages. Medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering can add up rapidly after a serious accident. SUM coverage ensures you’re not left to bear these crushing costs alone.
  • Peace of Mind in Uncertain Situations: Knowing you have SUM coverage offers a sense of security on the road, especially in areas with a higher prevalence of uninsured or underinsured drivers. This coverage mitigates the stress associated with the financial risks of an accident.

Understanding the Implications:

  • Premium Costs: While adding SUM coverage may lead to a slight increase in your insurance premiums, the potential financial protection it offers far outweighs this cost. Consider it an investment in your long-term financial stability.
  • Coverage Limits: Carefully consider the coverage limits you choose for your SUM policy. While higher limits may involve slightly higher premiums, they provide enhanced protection in the event of a catastrophic accident.

SUM coverage is a proactive measure that demonstrates financial responsibility. It empowers you to protect yourself and your loved ones from the potentially devastating financial fallout of an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver.


Supplemental Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (SUM) coverage is a cornerstone of a comprehensive and responsible auto insurance strategy. By protecting you against the financial risks posed by uninsured or underinsured drivers, it safeguards your financial future. Though it may slightly increase your premium, the invaluable peace of mind and potential financial protection far outweigh the cost.

Remember, accidents can happen at any time, and not every driver adheres to their insurance obligations. Investing in SUM coverage is not just a smart move, but a demonstration of self-protection and foresight. Don’t leave your financial well-being to chance on the road – secure the peace of mind that comes with SUM coverage.

Protect your financial future. Learn more about SUM coverage and your rights by contacting Grandelli Law.


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