It’s a Friday afternoon, around 5:15pm. You’re driving home from work daydreaming about the next two days getting to sit at home, catch up on the latest Netflix shows with your head back, your feet up and BAM! You just rear ended a four door sedan with a stick figure family of five on the back window. In an instant, everything has changed.
Car accidents happen, we know that. People get injured, unfortunately it happens. However, Florida is a no-fault state and it’s requirements for certain types of coverage can be very different from the rest of the United States. Regardless of who is actually at fault there is a specific type of insurance that will step in and pay coverage up to certain policy limits. This coverage is referred to as Personal Injury Protection (PIP). PIP comes into effect when any medical cost needs to be taken care of, like injuries you may have received as a result of a car accident. You have a limit of $10,000 worth of medical expenses that WILL be covered. Medical bills do rack up quickly, but you can gain some peace of mind knowing that you do have coverage, if you have auto insurance.
Bodily injury liability, however, is very different from Personal Injury Protection. If you are the cause of an accident and the person you hit is injured you are required to pay for their medical expenses. If you do not have bodily injury liability on your current auto policy then whoever was affected by the car accident, whether it was the car you hit or anyone in your vehicle who is not a relative, can sue you for all your worth. I wish we were kidding. Having bodily injury liability will ensure that whoever was injured as a result of your wrongdoing will in fact be covered up to certain policies limits. Property damage is similar to bodily injury liability, except that it doesn’t cover medical expenses for an injured party. Property Damage Liability (PDL) covers the cost of damage that may have been done to another vehicle by you, the person at fault. The minimum limit is $10,000 limit but that can be used up very quickly as damage to property tends to be very expensive. If you’re concerned, feel free to speak to your agent about increasing your PDL limit to avoid any risks.
In the state of Florida, having PIP and PDL on your auto insurance policy IS REQUIRED. As far as Bodily Injury Liability goes, it is not required. However if you’ve been convicted of a DUI, if you have a suspended driver’s license, if you were involved in a car accident resulting in injuries, or if you’ve received a ticket for driving without auto insurance, then you MUST carry Bodily Injury Liability coverage. Regardless, wouldn’t you want to have Bodily Injury Liability? I mean if you have the capability to prevent yourself from a financial hardship, wouldn’t you take advantage of it? Like we mentioned, things can happen IN AN INSTANT. Everything can change within seconds. Make sure YOU are covered.
Chalik & Chalik