If you’ve ever come home from work ready to relax in front of the TV, you’ve probably been bombarded by several advertisements for low-priced state minimum car insurance. Luckily, it isn’t hard to figure out that the reason this coverage is so cheap is because it’s the minimum you can purchase in your state. These commercials are usually a little mute on what ‘minimum coverage’ actually means, but you should know what this type of coverage entails before deciding to purchase it.
What is State Minimum Coverage?
State minimum coverage is the minimal amount of coverage a certain state will allow to qualify as satisfactory payment for car insurance, and can vary from state to state. A state will list its minimal coverage level as three numbers side by side (ie. 15/30/10). It’s important to note that each of these numbers describes the amount of money an insurance provider will pay out in thousands should you suffer an accident, and that each of the numbers applies to different aspects of the collision.
The first number listed is the maximum amount that the insurance company will pay out should you be injured in an accident. In the above example, you would be able to recover up to fifteen thousand dollars. The second number signifies the maximum amount that the insurance company will pay for all bodily injury claims. Essentially, this means if three people suffer ten thousand dollars worth of injuries each, they will all be covered in the previous example. The last number relates to property damage, and the above example states that the insurer will provide you up to ten thousand dollars in property damage compensation.
Is Minimum Coverage Enough?
Whether minimum coverage for you is a gray area. This type of policy may very well be enough to cover a minor accident with insignificant injuries, but that is really the only situation in which state minimum coverage will be sufficient. For example, some states have property damage coverage that drops down to five thousand dollars. As it isn’t unlikely for a car to be worth well over five thousand dollars, this can be a problem. If you were minimally insured and at fault for wrecking one of these cars, your insurance would be unable to completely cover the damage.
The same holds true for bodily injury. Short hospital stays can cost thousands of dollars, and minimum coverage isn’t likely to fully pay for serious injuries. If you aren’t insured for enough to cover property damage or bodily injuries, you could become liable for the remaining recompense owed to the injured. This could mean that you could be sued for thousands of dollars in medical bills, property damage, and pain and suffering if you cause a serious accident.
State minimum coverage is touted as a legitimate money-saving insurance policy everyday on television, but these commercials do not explain the full ramifications you could experience if you only have the minimal amount of coverage. One serious wreck could financially ruin you if you’re under this insurance. Additionally, minimal coverage also usually doesn’t include perks like roadside assistance, so there are actually several reasons that a driver should consider more extensive automobile insurance. For state requirements and information on Mentor, OH auto insurance, give us a call.