All About Liability Car Insurance

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Liability insurance covers medical expenses for injuries to drivers and passengers in a car accident you cause, as well as any property damage. This type of insurance represents the basic car insurance coverage you need to meet state requirements.
Your state laws determine a minimum amount of coverage you need to carry. Many experts suggest you should carry at least $100,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $300,000 of bodily injury liability per accident, and $50,000 of property damage coverage. Here are some must-know facts about liability car insurance, including how it works and what it covers.

How Liability Car Insurance Works

Liability insurance covers personal injury and property damage resulting from an accident you cause. Mandatory in every state, liability insurance includes bodily injury and property damage liability.
Bodily injury liability pays for:
  • Medical expenses
  • Loss of income
  • Pain and suffering
  • Legal fees
  • Funeral expenses
Property damage liability pays for:
  • Damage to another car
  • Damage to a house or other property struck by your car
  • Legal fees arising from a lawsuit associated with the accident
Coverage requirements vary by state.
Liability Coverage Requirements by State
State Body Injury Liability per Person/
Bodily Injury Liability per Accident/
Property Damage Coverage Requirements
Alabama $25,000/50,000/25,000
Alaska $50,000/100,000/25,000
Arizona $15,000/30,000/10,000
Arkansas $25,000/50,000/25,000
California $15,000/30,000/5,000
Colorado $25,000/50,000/15,000
Connecticut $20,000/40,000/10,000
Delaware $15,000/30,000/10,000
District of Columbia $25,000/50,000/10,000
Florida $10,000/20,000/10,000
Georgia $25,000/50,000/25,000
Hawaii $20,000/40,000/10,000
Idaho $25,000/50,000/15,000
Illinois $20,000/40,000/15,000
Indiana $25,000/50,000/10,000
Iowa $20,000/40,000/15,000
Kansas $25,000/50,000/10,000
Kentucky $25,000/50,000/10,000
Louisiana $15,000/30,000/25,000
Maine $15,000/30,000/10,000
Maryland $30,000/60,000/15,000
Massachusetts $30,000/60,000/15,000
Michigan $20,000/40,000/10,000
Minnesota $20,000/40,000/10,000
Mississippi $25,000/50,000/25,000
Missouri $25,000/50,000/10,000
Montana $25,000/50,000/10,000
Nebraska $25,000/50,000/25,000
Nevada $15,000/30,000/10,000
New Hampshire $25,000/50,000/25,000
New Jersey $15,000/30,000/5,000
New Mexico $25,000/50,000/10,000
New York $25,000/50,000/10,000
North Carolina $30,000/60,000/25,000
North Dakota $25,000/50,000/25,000
Ohio $12,500/25,000/7,500
Oklahoma $25,000/50,000/25,000
Oregon $25,000/50,000/20,000
Pennsylvania $15,000/30,000/5,000
Rhode Island $25,000/50,000/25,000
South Carolina $25,000/50,000/25,000
South Dakota $25,000/50,000/25,000
Tennessee $25,000/50,000/15,000
Texas $30,000/60,000/25,000
Utah $25,000/65,000/15,000
Vermont $25,000/50,000/10,000
Virginia $25,000/50,000/20,000
Washington $25,000/50,000/10,000
West Virginia $25,000/50,000/25,000
Wisconsin $25,000/50,000/10,000
Wyoming $25,000/50,000/20,000

What Liability Car Insurance Does Not Cover?

While liability insurance does pay for the medical and property expenses of other drivers and persons involved in an accident you cause, it does not pay for any costs associated with injury to yourself or your property. This exclusion also includes passengers in your vehicle, although MedPay coverage does pay for the injuries of passengers in your vehicle if you cause an accident.
Specific types of insurance exist for the purpose of paying for any injuries to yourself, your passengers, and your property, including collision, comprehensive, MedPay, and Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage.

Do You Need Liability Coverage Car Insurance?

All car owners must carry liability coverage car insurance. Considered the most basic form of car insurance coverage, liability helps protects others from accidents not caused by them. In states with no-fault laws, drivers do not need to carry bodily injury liability coverage on their policy. Instead, no-fault states require drivers to carry PIP coverage, which pays for any medical bills or lost earnings, although limits exist.
The following table shows the states that require you to purchase PIP coverage as a part of your car insurance and the minimum amounts, according to
States That Require PIP and the Minimum
Coverage Amounts
State Minimum Amount of Coverage Required
Florida $10,000 per person
Hawaii $10,000 per person
Kansas $4,500 per person for medical,
$4,500 rehabilitation, $2,000 funeral
Kentucky $10,000 per person
Massachusetts $8,000 per person
Michigan Unlimited medical, up to $5,189
a month in lost wages
Minnesota $40,000 per person
New Jersey $15,000 per person
New York $50,000 per person
North Dakota $30,000 per person
Pennsylvania $5,000 per person
Utah $3,000 per person
Source: [](
While liability car insurance is required in some form in every state, it comes in a variety of different coverage levels, ranging from basic levels mandated by state laws to more extensive coverage. Make sure you know what your state requires before you buy insurance.

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