Can a UIM claim be brought against your company if you were the driver of a golf cart on the road in a housing development who was hit by an automobile?

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Can a UIM claim be brought against your company if you were the driver of a golf cart on the road in a housing development who was hit by an automobile?

My friend was driving his golf cart on a road in his housing development and was struck by the operator of an automobile exiting the driveway of her house. He was completely ejected from the golf cart and sustained very serious injuries. He spent 3 days in the hospital and is now in rehab. This accident occurred in Florida. The driver of the auto only carries minimum coverage. Is he able to bring an underinsured motorist claim against his own insurance company since he was operating a golf cart and not an automobile?

Asked on May 23, 2019 under Accident Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Most likely a UIM claim cannot be brought in this case: while your friend should check the precise wording of his policy (an insurance policy is a contract, and like any contract, is enforced according to its plain wording), as a general matter, a golf cart, as a vehicle designe for operation on a golf course, would not meet the statutory definition in your state of a "motor vehicle," which is something designed to be operated on the road. Since UIM policies generally cover only motor vehicles, if that's what your friend's policy cover's, a golf cart or golf cart accident would not fall under it.
Here is a link to your state's law on what qualifies as a motor vehicle. Take a look at the beginning and at paragraph (22): http://www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0300-0399/0320/Sections/0320.01.html


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