You are responsible – you provide for your family, pay your bills on time, and obey the law. Like many others who call Huntsville or another city or small town in North Alabama “home,” you maintain insurance on all your family’s cars. Yet, have you ever taken the time to consider what insurance coverage you have and how it might protect you against potential harm? Hopefully, the following, the first in a series, will help provide you with a better understanding as to what all those abbreviations in your insurance policy mean and what types of (and how much) insurance coverage you should maintain.
Part 1 – Liability Coverage
Automobile owners in Alabama are required to maintain at least $25,000.00 (per person) / $50,000.00 (per incident) in bodily injury liability insurance coverage and at least $25,000.00 in property damage liability insurance coverage.
Liability insurance coverage only protects others who are injured (or their property is damaged) as a result of you or someone else negligently operating your vehicle. You cannot make a claim on the liability portion of your policy for injuries that you have sustained or for damage to your vehicle, regardless who caused the wreck. This is the only type of automobile insurance required under Alabama law.
Bodily Injury Liability – You should consider getting a quote from your insurance agent regarding the cost of increasing your bodily injury liability coverage. Ten times the amount of the bodily injury coverage will not cause your premiums to increase ten-fold. The increase in cost is typically minimal, when compared to the additional coverage obtained.
Property Damage Liability – A good goal would be $100,000.00 in coverage, but, if the premium is too expensive, try to maintain at least $50,000.00 in coverage. Remember, some vehicles nowadays cost in excess of $100,000.00 and you do not want to be personally responsible for any resulting damage in excess of your coverage limits.
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