2019 Vermont Statutes
Title 23 - Motor Vehicles
Chapter 11 - Financial Responsibility And Insurance
§ 941 Insurance against uninsured, underinsured, or unknown motorists
§ 941. Insurance against uninsured, underinsured, or unknown motorists
(a) No policy insuring against liability arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of any motor vehicle may be delivered or issued for delivery in this State with respect to any motor vehicle registered or principally garaged in this State unless coverage is provided therein, or supplemental thereto, for the protection of persons insured thereunder who are legally entitled to recover damages, from owners or operators of uninsured, underinsured, or hit-and-run motor vehicles, for bodily injury, sickness, or disease, including death, and for property damages resulting from the ownership, maintenance, or use of such uninsured, underinsured, or hit-and-run motor vehicle. The coverage for property damages shall be sufficient to indemnify a claim for damages to which the claimant is legally entitled of no more than $10,000.00 per claim, subject to a $150.00 deductible; provided, however, to the extent that other direct damage coverage is valid and collectible:
(1) this deductible shall not apply to a claimant who is otherwise insured for direct damages to his or her motor vehicle, in which case:
(A) the coverage for property damages provided in this section shall be applied, without deductible, to pay the deductible of the other direct damage coverage; and
(B) the balance of the direct damage claim, if any, shall be covered by such other direct damages coverage to the extent of its limits;
(2) further, any other claim for property damages, not direct damages, to which the claimant is legally entitled, shall be paid by the coverage required by this section, without deductible, to the extent of the limits herein provided.
(b) Every policy insuring against liability arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of any motor vehicle shall provide insurance against loss resulting from the liability imposed by law for damages because of bodily injury or death of any person within this State or elsewhere in the United States and Canada.
(c) The coverages under subsections (a) and (b) of this section for new or renewed policies shall be not less than $50,000.00 for one person and $100,000.00 for two or more persons killed or injured. If the limits of liability coverage in the policy are greater than $50,000.00 for one person and $100,000.00 for two or more persons injured or killed, the limits of uninsured motorist insurance shall be the same, unless the policyholder otherwise directs.
(d) For the purpose of this subchapter an "uninsured motor vehicle" includes an insured other motor vehicle where:
(1) the liability insurer of the other motor vehicle is unable, because of its insolvency, to make payment with respect to the legal liability of its insured within the limits specified in its policy; and
(2) the occurrence out of which the legal liability arose took place while the uninsured vehicle coverage required under subsection (a) of this section was in effect; and
(3) the insolvency of the liability insurer of the other motor vehicle existed at the time of, or within one year after, the occurrence.
(e) If payment is made under uninsured motorist coverage, and subject to the terms of that coverage, to the extent of that payment, the insurer is entitled to the proceeds of any settlement or recovery from any person legally responsible for the damage or personal injury, as to which the payment was made, and to amounts recoverable from the assets of an insolvent insurer of such person. However, if the injured party settles or recovers against any person, any reimbursement due to an insurer under this section shall be reduced by deducting a fair portion of all reasonable expenses of recovery incurred in effecting the settlement or recovery. The expenses of recovery shall be apportioned between the parties as their interests appear at the time of the settlement or recovery.
(f) For the purpose of this subchapter, a motor vehicle is underinsured to the extent that:
(1) the liability insurance limits applicable at the time of the accident are less than the limits of the uninsured motorist coverage applicable to the insured; or
(2) the available liability insurance has been reduced by payments to others injured in the accident to an amount less than the limits of the uninsured motorist coverage applicable to the insured.
(g) Within 30 days of receipt of a written request by a person reasonably claiming the right to recover damages after an accident involving owners or operators of motor vehicles for bodily injury, sickness, or disease, including death, or for property damages resulting from the ownership, maintenance, or use of a motor vehicle, an insurer that may be liable to satisfy part or all of the claim under a policy subject to this chapter shall provide a statement, by a duly authorized agent of the insurer, setting forth the names of the insurer and insured, and the limits of liability coverage. (Added 1967, No. 374 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; amended 1979, No. 194 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 1981; 1983, No. 61, § 3; 1985, No. 77, § 3; 1997, No. 117 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 35, 37, eff. Jan. 1, 1999; 2005, No. 9, § 1, eff. May 27, 2005.)