This post is part two of the blog post that answers the question “How much car insurance is enough?”
Compensation for Harm You Cause Others
Collisions send millions of people to hospital emergency rooms every year, and hundreds of thousands of them must remain hospitalized for treatment and recovery. Usually, the at-fault driver is responsible for paying for compensatory damages to the victim, and in some cases punitive damages, too. If you are at-fault for an accident that causes injuries to one or more victims, your bodily injury liability insurance will help cover the costs.
At Integrity Insurance Agency, we emphasize the importance of having the right limits for your bodily injury liability coverage. Kansas requires all drivers to carry a minimum amount of coverage, but it may not be enough to cover a major claim. Injury-related lawsuits can include compensation for medical bills, rehabilitative care, lost wages, emotional distress, and more. Whether you are partially or at-fault for an accident, you are responsible for paying the damages – even if they exceed the limits of your car insurance policy. Without the right coverage, your income and assets could be at risk.
Split Limits vs. Combined Single Limit (CSL)
Bodily injury liability limits are available as a combined single limit (CSL) or a split limit. A combined single limit does not cap the amount of coverage available per person – only per accident. A 300 CSL, for example, pays up to $300,000 in total bodily injury damages per accident, which may be allocated to victims in any amount. A split limit defines the per-accident coverage, as well as the maximum coverage per individual. A 250/500 split, for example, pays up to $250,000 per injured person and up to $500,000 for all injured parties combined per accident.
Money to Protect You and Your Passengers against Uninsured or Underinsured Drivers
When the injured party is you, your priority is making sure you get all of the medical care you need. Here in Kansas, drivers purchase Personal Injury Protection (PIP) to provide primary coverage for injuries regardless of who is at-fault for an accident. PIP can cover your medical expenses, as well as disability payments for lost wages. You also have the right to pursue an at-fault driver for compensation for your injuries. If an uninsured motorist hits you, however, your uninsured motorist coverage (UI) can provide coverage to you and your passengers instead. Likewise, underinsured motorist coverage (UIM) helps fill in the gaps left by an at-fault driver’ inadequate coverage.
Money to Help with the Little Things
Small expenses can add up quickly after a car accident. You might have to pay for towing and perhaps even a rental car while your vehicle is repaired. Instead of paying hundreds of dollars out of pocket, consider adding coverage for the ‘little’ things to your policy instead.
Beyond Car Insurance
Aside from high-limit liability insurance and the right types of coverage on your car insurance policy, you might also consider purchasing an umbrella policy to supplement your coverage. Umbrella insurance is secondary liability protection that pays for damages that exceed the limits on your primary coverage. If you are responsible for a $1 million judgment but only have $250,000 for individual liability, an umbrella policy can cover the remaining $750,000 with room to spare. Most umbrella policies are very affordable and provide extended liability coverage of $1 million or more.
Contact us today to find out how adding an umbrella to your insurance portfolio could better protect your income and assets against financial ruin.