UPDATED: Sep 29, 2020
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There are a lot of auto insurance coverage options, but one kind is rarely optional: liability insurance.
So what is automobile liability coverage? Well, having automobile liability coverage on your auto insurance policy is required by law in pretty much every state. The only exception is Massachusetts, where you don’t technically have to have auto insurance, just proof you can pay in the event that you cause an accident. This type of coverage ensures that, if you are deemed at fault in an accident, you (or your insurance provider) can pay for damages caused by your negligent driving.
If you’re looking for a quote for auto liability insurance you can search using our FREE comparison tool above.
What Does Liability Automobile Insurance Coverage Do for You?
Liability insurance can be divided into two sub-groups:
- Bodily Injury Liability: Covers medical expenses, pain & suffering, lost wages, and other special damages.
- Property Damage Liability: Covers damaged property, possibly including loss of use.
For example, if you hit another driver and they sustain a physical injury, your Bodily Injury Liability coverage would pay for that claim. Or if you hit another vehicle from behind and damage their rear bumper, your Property Damage Liability coverage would take care of it. Liability coverage can also be put toward covering your legal defense fees and court fees in the event that you are sued.
Just remember that your Liability Coverage limits are the maximum dollar amounts that your insurance company will pay out on a claim. And if all you get are the state mandatory minimums and you are found at fault in a serious accident, you could be held financially liable for the difference. For example, if you total a $35,000 car but your Liability limits are set at $25,000, you might end up paying that remaining $10,000 out of pocket. Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates. Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
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Choosing the Amount of Coverage that Is Right for Me
So how much auto liability coverage do you need?
Different states have different mandatory minimum limits for Liability insurance. Some requirements are so low that you won’t be required to carry any Bodily Injury Liability, and a mere $10,000 in Property Damage Liability. Most states, however, have a 25/50/25 requirement (as in $25,000/$50,000) in order to drive legally.
But the best way to know how much Liability coverage you need is to sit down with your insurance agent and discuss the details of your policy. However, you should not be surprised if your agent suggests you protect yourself with 100/300/100 Liability coverage, since that is a pretty universal amount of coverage which most drivers choose to purchase (assuming they can afford it, that is).