Stacked and Unstacked Auto Insurance Coverage

Many states will not allow motorists to increase Uninsured Motorist coverage limits without increasing liability as well. The point they are trying to make is that if you aren’t willing to afford the same protection to third parties you cannot have it either. Stacking is an option to get around it and add coverage for different vehicles on top of each other and claim larger sums in one occurrence. It can be a contentious issue at times. It is generally used in relation with UMC.

Significance of Stacking Uninsured Motorist Coverage

Where allowed this gives the option of adding the limits for each vehicle on top of each other so that you can have one large sum. For example, you have $25,000/$50,000 limits for the first car. When you want to add another automobile onto the same policy you can choose to add the coverage for the second car on top of the first one.

In other words, instead of having two separate amount for each car you will have the option of having a combined $50,000/$100,000 UMC. If an uninsured driver ever hits you the injuries and property damages can be large. If you stacked them you can make a twice larger claim in the case of the example above. Considering how expensive hospital costs can be, it wouldn’t be hard to understand the significance of this arrangement.

Is stacking Allowed across the USA?

Currently, it is not allowed in nearly half of the states. And where it is allowed there may be stipulations on how it could be used. For example, some authorities may allow you to have it across two separate policies but not allow it under one or vice verse. Some of them that allow it are; Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, West Virginia.

Furthermore, not having provision for it in state legislation or not being explicitly allowed didn’t stop some motorist from taking their case to courts and enforcing it. As the legislation changes fast you should check the provision where you are if you are really interested in this option.

Is It Allowed on the Same or Across Policies?

Depending on the location, stacking within the same, across and both may be possible options. If you have it within the same you would have much larger protection for each incident.

If you decided to have it across policies for different cars you would be able to use the coverage for the other car (that didn’t involve in the accident) when the first one is exhausted. For example, you have $50,000 physical injury limit on each car insurance policies. If you have an accident and your traffic injury related medical bills higher than $50,000 you can use the limits on the second car as well.

Advantages of Stacking

When you have it you would be able to buy larger level of protection overall. Normally, states may not allow you to increase UM/UIM without increasing liability limits in line with it. It would allow you to keep larger protection without the need to increase liability as well. It would naturally cost you a little bit more in terms of premiums.

What Is Unstacked Auto Insurance Coverage?

It means you keep the Uninsured Motorists Coverage for each vehicle separate. Once it runs out you cannot benefit from the other vehicle’s provision, no matter how many other automobiles or how many other cars on same policy you have.

As a result you may be able to pay lower premiums. However, there would be a chance that you would be short-changed if a driver with no provision hits you.

Also, if it is not allowed in your state you really don’t have much option other than keeping everything separate. Alternatively, you can just increase the liability limits and this will automatically give you what you want on your side of protections as well.

Apart from all the arguments on the subject, who could blame drivers who want to benefit from an option that is available to them at a fairly low cost? So, just check the status and costs and see if it is something you could or want to add.