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For the last two weeks the prolific writers here at the Injuryboard, have been participating in a daily dialog about their local perspective on various national issues. This is Minnesota’s dive into that discussion. If you haven’t been reading it, you really should. At the bottom of this post is the list of the other articles.

Here in Minnesota, Interstate 94 runs across the middle of the state, I-90 runs across the southern part of the state, and I-35 runs north and south. A number of other interstate roads crisscross the state. All of these roads, connect us to the many roads that are coming out of other states. Over time, I have written about all types of tragic collisions on many of those well traveled roads. Some times each of us get involved in those collisions that take place, but many times we never find out what happened.

If the cars are insured, then we know that for Minnesota , no fault benefits will come into play. These are the basic benefits that pay for medical expenses, wage loss, and replacement services that allow coverage when a car is involved. My partner Joe Crumley has written extensively about these coverages. Often, the Application for Benefits, which is generally required by insurance companies in order to initiate payment for the aforementioned benefits, is the first application that the injured parties have to fill out.

If one or more of the vehicles involved in the crash is uninsured, as is being talked about by Devon Glass from Church Wyble, P.C., Steve Lombardi from The Lombardi Law Firm, Wayne Parsons of Wayne Parsons Law Offices, Rick Shapiro from Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton, P.C., and Pierce Egerton from Egerton & Associates; there is an even greater reason why you should protect yourself and your passenger(s) by purchasing increased uninsured motorist (UM) coverage. UM is sold in a link with underinsured (UIM) coverage, which is the coverage that protects you and your passengers when the other car has insurance, but not enough. These coverages are extremely important to protect yourself and your family against injuries and the many hardships that come after many accidents.

Over the last week, I have been driving the Minnesota portion of I-94 from end to end, and I have observed an increased number of state troopers out on the roads. I would guess that with people heading off to college, Labor day coming up, the increased DUI enforcement, and people heading down to the State Fair, it makes sense to be watching the roads more. Hopefully, they are being made safer; but, you still need to protect yourself and your family by checking your personal auto coverage.

Another helpful thing to do is spend a little time looking over these posts:

Are Double-Bottomed Semis More or Less Dangerous to You? – Devon Glass from Church Wyble, P.C. (Michigan), August 26, 2009

Who wins and loses when a Ford Focus and a fully-loaded semi-truck crash? – Steve Lombardi from The Lombardi Law Firm (Iowa), August 25, 2009

Hawaii Freeway Chronicles #1: What Are The Danger Points On H-1, H-2 and H-3?, by Wayne Parsons of Wayne Parsons Law Offices. (Hawaii), August 27, 2009

The Interstate Highway Graveyard, “Speed Kills”, Lombardi, August 28, 2009

Why Speeders on the Highway Cause More Serious Accidents, Glass, August 28, 2009

Death and Injury On Interstate Highways Increase With Higher Speed Limits, Wayne Parsons, August 29, 2009 2:31 AM

Drunk Drivers Caused 40% of Traffic Fatalities In Hawaii In 2006, Wayne Parsons, August 31, 2009 12:16 AM

Interstate Highways Are No Place For Drunk Drivers Over The Labor Day Weekend, Wayne Parsons | September 01, 2009 4:36 PM

Uninsured Motorist Car Insurance: It’s Your Most Important Car Insurance and Here Is Why, Rick Shapiro, September 01, 2009 10:30 AM

Uninsured Drivers: Who Are These People?, Pierce Egerton , September 02, 2009 12:00 PM

Risky Drivers Don’t Just Drive Drunk and Speed – They Often Don’t have Insurance , Wayne Parsons, September 02, 2009 4:09PM


  1. Gravatar for Steve Lombardi

    Mike: We don't have no-fault insurance in Iowa and frankly I'm not as aware of it's good or bad points for the average Joe's point of view. I guess in Iowa underinsured and underinsured coverage is probably the closest we get to it. For me UIM and UDM coverage’s protect you and your family, so why not have the highest limits you can possibly get? And with the economy in the throws of a recession the number of un or underinsured drivers has increased meaning if you're in an accident it's very likely the "other guy" isn't going to have insurance or enough of it. With more people traveling the roads to save money on vacations abroad everyone should check their insurance coverage before leaving home. Great post for Minnesotans to read before travelling. Oh and by the way, GO HAWKS!

  2. Gravatar for Mike Bryant

    Not sure about the Hawks, but for Minnesota No Fault is a very good thing. Pays for basic benefits and keeps a lot of cases out of the courts. Like everything else there could be improvements, but it's a vital part of our system. As you say, it's what protects you and your family , so you need to stack benefits when you have multiple cars and cover yourself with extra UM and UIM. Gophers have a new house, so hopefully it will be a better year.

  3. Gravatar for Rick Shapiro


    Excellent post on Minnesota uninsured driver/motorist issues. Like Steve Lombardi from Iowa, no fault benefits are not available in Virginia or North Carolina, states I practice in. But I agree with your point that uninsured motorist insurance coverage should be high, I suggested at least $ 250,000 in my recent post on Virginia UM insurance and uninsured drivers. Personally, I have $500,000 UM coverage, and had to increase my bodily injury limits to that leveal to get my UM coverage that high. If my family is in a catastrophic wreck caused by an uninsured driver, I don't want to be wishing I had more coverage.

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