If you are injured by someone operating an underinsured or uninsured automobile, and your claim has been assessed by legal counsel as being in excess of the Section D or Section 5 limits in your region, you may be entitled to coverage under the Family Protection Endorsement, more commonly referred to as the SEF 44 or OPCF-44R.
The Family Protection Endorsement is additional coverage that can be added onto your motor vehicle insurance policy to protect you and eligible family members in the event you are injured at the fault of an underinsured driver. Underinsured drivers are those who are uninsured, unidentified, or whose insurance coverage is less than the assessed damages that they have caused.
The Family Protection Endorsement is “excess coverage”. This means that your SEF 44/OPCF-44 policy will only become payable to you where the other driver’s policy limits are less than your SEF 44/OPCF-44 policy limits.
For example, let’s say you are in a motor vehicle accident and are severely injured and your claim has been assessed at approximately $750,000. If the at-fault driver’s insurance policy has a limit of $500,000 and your SEF 44 coverage has a $1,000,000 policy limit, you will have access to the difference between your limit and the at-fault driver’s limit, or up to $500,000 in SEF 44 coverage. In this situation, the at-fault driver’s insurance policy would cover the first $500,000 and your SEF 44 will cover the remaining $250,000.
Let’s use the same example, but with a different SEF 44 policy limit. You are in a motor vehicle accident and are severely injured and your claim has been assessed at approximately $750,000. If the at-fault driver’s insurance policy has a limit of $500,000 and your SEF 44 coverage has a $500,000 policy limit, then the difference between the driver’s policy limit and your SEF 44 coverage is zero. This means that you will only receive $500,000 from the at-fault driver, which is less than the $750,000 your claim has been valued at.
Typically, adding the Family Protection endorsement onto your existing motor vehicle insurance policy is not costly, but it provides extensive coverage in the event of a catastrophic accident. It is important to know what your SEF 44/OPCF-44 policy limit is to best protect you and your family.
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