Hello! I’m Dan Lyles with Lyles Insurance. In this video, we’re going to go over why state minimum liability auto insurance coverage sucks!
When many drivers buy auto insurance, they choose the state minimum level of liability coverage that they’re allowed to buy. And this video is going to explain why this is a big mistake! And we’re also going to give you a better understanding of how liability coverage works with auto insurance.
First, let’s go over the basics of liability coverage. Liability coverage is required on all auto insurance policies. And what it does, it pays the other guy if you cause an accident which results in other people either being injured or having property damage. And those are the two parts of liability coverage: Bodily injury and Property damage.
It’s important that you understand what the numbers mean as far as liability coverage levels. So here’s how you’ll usually see it, is three numbers separated by slashes. So let’s use the example of 50/100/25. The first number 50, that’s the maximum amount in thousands that your coverage will pay to any one person that you’ve injured. So anybody, single person it won’t pay more than $50,000. The second number, 100, represents multiple people being injured and the total it will pay in full to everybody, $100,000. And the third number represents property damage. $25,000 is the most it would pay here.
So if you look at the levels of state minimum coverage that your state requires, I’ve included the six states in my territory where I sell auto insurance: Ohio, Indiana, Virginia, West Virginia, Michigan or Pennsylvania. If you live in any of those six states, you can see what your state’s minimum level of coverage that you need to carry. And as you might notice, those numbers are pretty low. In fact very low!
This is the fundamental reason why state minimum liability coverage is inadequate. It’s usually okay for your minor accidents or fender benders. Where it falls way short are the more serious and severe accidents. Think about if someone is hospitalized. And look at those levels of coverage on the previous screen. You’ll realize that just one or two days in a hospital can exhaust those amounts. And you could be on the hook for the rest of it if someone’s critically injured or has really severe injuries. That’s why you need to stay away from state minimum coverage.
When drivers choose just to settle for state minimum liability coverage, it’s usually because they realize that that only pays the other guy. What they don’t realize: you also limit yourself by doing that. Because uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage is very important coverage to have for yourself in case you get hit by somebody that either doesn’t have liability coverage, or has skimpy levels of coverage as well. And you are not allowed to carry higher levels of uninsured motorist coverage than what you selected for liability coverage. So if you choose to go skimpy on the liability coverage, you’re limited to that same level of coverage yourself. This is very important to keep in mind.
And one last thing that I want you to think about, understand that liability coverage is not unit priced. Meaning that doubling your amount of liability coverage will not double the price. In many cases, doubling coverage only amounts to an increase of a few dollars more per month. And even tripling or quadrupling coverage is only a little more beyond that. So the best way to handle it is to look at the next levels of coverage. Go up at least one and two levels and see how much higher it costs. Because usually you can afford a little higher coverage. And keep in mind what I mentioned about how inadequate state minimum coverage is. And you can see why it’s a no-brainer to go with higher levels of coverage.
For those of you who live in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia or West Virginia, if you’d like to get an auto insurance quote, I will be happy to run one for you personally myself. I’ve left my quote information from my website on here. And I’ve also listed my phone number. You can go online and get a quote or just give me a call. Thank you for watching and have a great day!
Dan Lyles is an Independent Insurance Agent serving Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia..