Understanding Liability Insurance

Understanding Liability Insurance

No matter the state you live in, you will be required to carry a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage before you can legally drive.  Obtaining this insurance isn’t just about abiding by the law, however, as auto liability insurance also keep you protected.  After all, if you get in an accident and you are found to be at fault, you could be forced to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in order to replace property and pay medical bills.  With auto liability insurance in place, on the other hand, you and your assets are protected if your property becomes damaged or if you cause someone to be injured in an auto accident.

Bodily Injury Liability

There are two different types of liability insurance that you must carry in order to drive.  One of these is bodily injury liability.  Bodily injury liability covers the costs associated with personal injuries someone endures when you cause an auto accident. This coverage will pay for the medical expenses of your passengers, pedestrians, and people in any other vehicle involved in the accident.  It will also cover the costs associated with someone being killed as the result of an auto accident that you cause.

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Your policy will have a limit on how much it will pay for bodily injury liability.  The higher the limit, the more you will pay each month in insurance premiums.  Each state has a set minimum that all drivers must carry, with that amount varying from state to state.  Check with your state to find out how much you have to carry and consider carrying more bodily injury liability insurance if the required minimum is low.  Otherwise, if the expenses exceed your minimum, you will be personally responsible for paying the remaining costs.

Property Damage Liability

Property damage liability insurance is in place to cover the expenses associated with damage to property.  This property may be other vehicles that are damaged in an accident you cause, but may also be property such as light posts, mailboxes, houses, fences or anything else that becomes damaged from the accident.  As with bodily injury liability insurance, there is a maximum pay out with property damage liability.

Keep in mind that liability insurance does not cover your personal medical bills or the cost associated with replacing your vehicle if it becomes damaged in a car accident that is your fault.  Rather, this insurance covers the expenses that others incur as the result of the accident.  If you want to protect your property and have medical coverage in place for your medical expenses, you will need to add additional protection to your policy.

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