Basic Liability Insurance Coverage
Too many drivers pay too much in insurance bills for not enough in coverage. Are you one of them?
Find out what safe, cost-effective auto insurance coverage is.
Provides auto insurance advice on your most important policy
Explains how you can cut costs and maintain safe coverage
Recommends safe auto insurance coverage amounts
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The best car insurance advice we can give you is to pay close attention to the combination of policies you carry. That's more important than any single auto insurance coverage.
Basic liability coverage
This is the single most important type of auto insurance coverage. Carrying too little auto accident liability can expose you to judgments and legal costs for years to come.
Most states require something like 50/100/25 in liability coverage. That's up to $50,000 coverage for any single person injured by you in an auto accident, and up to $100,000 for everyone injured. Not a lot of money for medical bills, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering.
You should probably carry more.
Additional auto insurance coverage (anything you get over the minimum) gets cheaper as you buy more. This means that your premium goes up a little while your protection goes up a lot.
Pay special attention to bodily injury liability. It's easy to imagine the cost of personal injuries (plus pain and suffering and lost wages) totalling a million dollars from a somewhat serious accident.
The standard (the average, not the minimum) auto liability policy is 100/300, where the 300 stands for $300,000 in total bodily injury liability.
But we would recommend that you take out at least $300,000-$500,000 worth of personal injury liability, even if that means less property damage coverage.
Why? Because property damage from an accident won't be nearly as expensive as injuries can be. So the $25,000 worth of property damage liability coverage in our example policy is probably adequate. (Of course, you can be on the safe side with a little more.)
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Next: These may or may not be required in your state, but if they are, you should carefully consider how much to pay for them: uninsured motorist coverage and medical protection.
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