Auto insurance is a fact of life for most people. Even if you never get in an accident or file a claim, it’s crucial that you buy the right insurance. Having the right policy gives you some peace of mind and at least some reassurance that if you happen to be involved in a car crash. What are the basic components for insurance, and how much coverage do you need? In this blog post, we will provide you with a quick overview.
Personal Injury Protection
When shopping for insurance, the first thing you need to know is what your state minimum requirements are. For instance, some states require that you carry insurance that will help you pay your medical bills resulting from an accident, regardless of whether you are at fault. This coverage is called personal injury protection or PIP and it is a required insurance in the state of Florida. PIP insurance is also known as no-fault insurance because payouts are not determined by who is responsible. Even when you’re not at fault, your PIP insurance can be tapped to cover your medical bills and work loss and those of your passengers. PIP can cover everything from medical and surgical treatment to ambulance fees and rehabilitation, up to the limits of the policy. PIP, like almost all the components of auto insurance, varies in benefits and coverage according to which state you are in. In Florida, for instance, PIP insurance covers 80 percent of your medical bills and 60 percent of your lost wages up to $10,000.
Bodily Injury Liability
Bodily injury liability is the most important and expensive part of your auto insurance policy. It covers the medical costs for people you injure when an accident is your fault. It doesn’t cover your own injuries or expenses, but it can be a buffer when the accident is particularly bad. Bodily injury liability coverage also ensures you get a lawyer to defend you, and it pays to settle that case for one person or a group of people. Sometimes your policy liability limits are listed with three numbers, such as 30/60/15. When you see that, the third number represents the limit on the coverage for property damage, including cars, buildings, or other nonhuman losses. Other policies list property damage liability as a separate component. Some states don’t require BI, and many people don’t carry it. It’s a calculated risk; these people figure that if they cause an accident, the other guy won’t be able to collect from them because they don’t have any money and drive a beater car. The debtor laws in Florida protect people who owe money. Not having insurance, when you are uncollectible, isn’t such a terrible option. Of course, if you are uninsured and you are hurt by someone who is uninsured, then you are both out of luck.
Uninsured Motorist Protection
In addition to protecting yourself when you cause an accident, you also must protect yourself when an at-fault driver carries insufficient insurance to cover the damages they cause you to suffer. This type of insurance is called uninsured motorist (UM) or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage, and it’s the flip side of bodily injury insurance. Most states require that you first get bodily injury (BI) coverage before you can purchase UM/UIM. Each state treats UM and UIM differently. Some make it stackable, so it pays off in addition to other coverages. In Florida, UM and UIM are treated the same, which means it does not matter if the other driver is totally uninsured or just underinsured. Both UM and UIM are simply in addition to whatever the defendant has in total coverage. If an at-fault driver has $10,000 of BI coverage, and my client has $100,000 in UM/UIM coverage, then the total coverage, in this case, would be $110,000.
Speak with a Car Accident Attorney Miami Today!
After an accident, there is no time to waste. An attorney can assist you by investigating all the details of your crash, talking to medical professionals, obtaining necessary evidence to prove your case, negotiating with insurance companies and individuals, and preparing your case as if it’s going to trial. Our attorneys are ready to provide proven legal representation and stand ready to protect your rights and the rights of your loved ones. We are available 24/7 to give you a free, no risk case consultation! At our firm, our policy is that if you don’t recover compensation, you won’t pay any fees for our services. Not to mention, we also provide free case consultations where we assess the circumstances surrounding your case and give you an objective overview of what steps you can take going forward if you decide to act against the party responsible for your injuries. For over 20 years, we have delivered quality legal representation for people who, through no fault of their own, have been injured in all types of accidents and incidents. We are available 24/7 to give you a free, no risk case consultation.
We serve clients throughout Florida including those in the following areas:
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