Why Drivers Need Auto Liability Coverage

Two drivers exchange auto insurance information after a collision

If the at-fault driver in a collision does not have enough auto liability coverage, they are personally responsible for excess damage costs.

If you get into a car accident and are found at-fault for causing the accident, you may be deemed liable or responsible for the other driver’s damages. Your auto insurance plan has what is called “liability coverage,” which steps in and pays for the other party’s damages from an auto collision in which you are at fault. If you don’t have enough auto liability coverage, you could be personally responsible for paying any expenses not covered by your insurance plan, which can be disastrous to your finances. To avoid the consequences that come with low auto liability coverage, read our guide on the types of coverage available, and how to protect yourself against paying out of pocket costs. 

The Types of Auto Liability Coverage

Bodily Injury Liability

This coverage covers any expenses related to the injury of the other driver or their passengers. This includes medical bills, pain and suffering, rehab costs, lost wages, and any additional associated costs. 

Property Damage Liability

This auto liability coverage covers damages related to the other person’s property. This includes their car or any physical structure or government property which was damaged in the accident.  

What Can Happen If You Don’t Have Enough Auto Liability Coverage

The Costs

Bodily injury can rack up costs quickly: an ambulance ride can cost several hundred dollars, and an ER visit can cost hundreds, or even thousands of dollars. In addition, vehicle repairs can be costly.  Even what appears to be minor damage can cost several thousand dollars in repair costs. 

The Consequences

Many states require drivers to carry a minimum amount of auto liability coverage. However, even if you carry both types of liability coverage, it may not be enough. If you are found liable for $40,000 worth of damage and your liability coverage limit is the Maryland State minimum of $30,000, you would be personally responsible for the remaining $10,000.  

If you can’t pay the remainder, you may need to take out loans or mortgages, which can put you in debt. The other party may even pursue legal action to guarantee that you pay the remaining expenses. 

How to Protect Yourself Against Poor Auto Liability Coverage

Raise Your Auto Liability Limits

The best thing to do to avoid out-of-pocket costs and debt is to raise your liability limits. Talk with an insurance advisor to determine the best plan for you.

Get a Lawyer

Liability usually indicates that you have been found at-fault in a court of law. The court will determine how much you other the other party. It is important to acquire a lawyer who can fight against claims against you. At the very least, they will likely be able to lower the expenses to meet your auto liability limits.  Your liability insurer would likely provide an attorney to defend you, but you have the right to obtain your own private counsel as well. 

Lower Your Insurance Costs

A lot of people do not have enough auto liability coverage because they are trying to save money on their monthly insurance premiums. 

If you need to lower your insurance costs, you can research insurance discounts offered, like safety discounts or bundling. Provided that you are a safe, reliable, and low-risk driver, these offers can help lower your costs. 

Let Simons & Goldner, P.A. Represent You

Simons & Goldner, P.A., located in Lutherville, MD, consists of two partners, Stevan G. Simons and Richard H. Goldner practicing primarily in personal injury, medical malpractice, Worker’s Compensation, and criminal law. The partners come with decades of experience assisting clients injured by the negligence of others or injured on the job. We serve clients in the Baltimore, Towson, Essex and Dundalk area and work closely with our clients to ensure that your case moves quickly and efficiently and that you get all the benefits to which you are entitled. 

Initial consultations are available by phone or in-person and are free of charge. Contact us now to schedule a consultation, or call us today at 410-296-3110. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn for advice and updates.

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Client Reviews

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