The Basics Of Florida Auto Insurance Law

The Basics Of Florida Auto Insurance Law
The first step in choosing your next (and possibly your first) Florida auto insurance policy is understanding Florida laws relevant to car insurance and how they will affect you. Once you understand what is legally required, then you can look at how to customize your policy to fit your precise needs, with the help of a trusted insurance agent.
Here are the basics in that direction to get you started:

What Auto Insurance Is Required In Florida?
As in other US states, you are legally required to buy auto insurance in order to drive a motor vehicle on public highways. You will need to show proof of insurance when registering your vehicle and getting your Florida vehicle title.

In Florida, you are required to buy a minimum coverage of $10,000 for PIP (personal injury protection) and $10,000 for PDL (property damage liability.) A little explanation is in order to break that down.

As Florida is a no-fault auto insurance state, your own policy covers you against personal injury sustained in an accident regardless of who or what caused the accident. Your own PIP still covers you when you are driving someone else’s car (with their permission) and, in some cases, covers others who are driving yours if they lack their own PIP coverage. PIP provides some coverage for your kids and household members and passengers, besides also covering your child if injured in a school bus accident. Additionally, you are covered by PIP even if hit and injured as a pedestrian.

PDL coverage takes care of property damage that you are liable for in the event of an auto accident. This does NOT cover your own vehicle or other property but that of the other party. And PDL is not a no-fault system like PIP is.

Note that PDL and PIP only protect you up to the limits of the policy. Anything beyond that can be sought from you by the other driver in a separate lawsuit. This is why it makes sense to buy beyond the minimum coverage limits and to pay a tiny bit extra for uninsured and under-insured motorist coverage.

Additional Coverage You Can Add On
Aside from uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage and boosted your PIP/PDL limits, you can also add other elements to your auto insurance policy. Bodily injury liability (BIL) is a good idea. It will help pay for legal and medical expenses if you should cause the injury or death of another person in a car crash. Adding BIL can be an alternative to boosting your PIP limits, but it’s still a good idea to do both.

The other major components you can add to your policy are collision and comprehensive. These are typically required when you take out a car loan if the care is very valuable, and they are usually bought together. Collision protects your own vehicle, should it get damaged, regardless of whose fault it was – when the damage results from an accident (a collision). Comprehensive covers your own vehicle against theft, vandalism, falling objects, hail, and various other dangers. Each policy will have a different list of inclusions and exclusions, so it pays to discuss the coverage details with a car insurance agent.

It can take some time to “wrap your head around” the exact way each component of Florida auto insurance works. For answers to all your questions and a free quote, contact Flagler County Insurance Agency today!