In almost every state, it is mandatory to have car insurance before getting behind the wheel. Each state differs in terms of what coverage is required by law, but coverage may not cover all expenses in a car wreck case. It is important to know the different types of car insurance in order to protect oneself and others.
Alabama Drivers and Liability Coverage
It is mandatory for all drivers in Alabama to have auto insurance coverage. The minimum requirement to operate a motor vehicle is to have liability coverage that covers 25/50/25. Liability coverage means that should a driver who carries the minimum insurance policy be at fault for an accident, then their own coverage would protect the other driver to a certain amount. The 25/50/25 coverage includes $25,000 per person for any injuries, $50,000 per accident for any injuries, and $25,000 per person for any property damage.
It is important to understand that the minimum auto coverage required by law is almost always a liability policy and only covers the minimum. Medical bills can easily surpass the $25,000 limit, particularly if the accident was moderate to severe. A hospital visit alone with an ambulance ride can cost a significant amount. Auto repair bills are just as costly as well.
There are other laws concerning auto insurance that Alabama drivers should be mindful about. The Alabama Mandatory Liability Insurance (MLI) law makes it illegal for a driver to not have minimal car insurance. Violating the MLI law means hefty fines up to $1,000 and penalties, including license and registration suspensions. Continual violations could lead to jail time as well.
Are There Other Types of Car Insurance Coverage?
Although Alabama law requires a driver to carry minimum liability coverage, there are other types of coverage that are available. The following contains available options.
Collision coverage is based around any accident the insured gets in. It may cover the repair bills for the insured’s vehicle, regardless of who is at fault for the accident. Some lienholders or leasing companies may require this coverage.
Uninsured or Underinsured Coverage
Even with state laws in place, it is a possibility to be involved in an accident with an uninsured driver. There are also other drivers who do carry the minimum liability coverage. If an accident occurs and the damages cost more than the coverage allows, then this coverage may protect the driver and their passengers.
Comprehensive coverage may cover the insured driver’s damaged vehicle. This means comprehensive coverage may pay for damages caused by a fallen tree branch, vandalism, or any other unforeseen event. Like collision coverage, some lienholders or leasing companies may require their drivers to carry this.
Medical bills can get very expensive. Medical coverage offered by auto insurance companies may cover the driver and passengers’ medical bills, regardless of fault.
Personal Injury Protection
Although some states may not offer this type of coverage, it is still worth mentioning. Personal injury protection (PIP) covers an injured driver’s medical expenses, but may also cover funeral costs, lost wages from work, and other expenses derived from a car accident.
If a driver just took out a loan for a new vehicle and suddenly totaled the vehicle, they may be surprised to find that the claim amount does not cover what the insured owes. This is because the insurance claim will pay out what the market value of the vehicle is. More than likely, the value is less than what the driver has left in their loan. The difference in the two amounts is considered a gap. Gap coverage is meant for this instance.
Some coverages include rental reimbursement, this is where a driver is covered if they need to drive a rental car because of vehicular damages. There is also a rideshare insurance as well, which is similar to rental car coverage, but it uses rideshare apps instead.
Roadside assistance, towing coverage, glass insurance, and new car replacement coverage are available options as well.
Even with all the different types of coverage, a driver may be injured in an accident and not know what to do next. This is when it is imperative that the injured driver contact an experienced car accident attorney to answer any questions.
Huntsville Car Accident Attorneys at Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C. Help Drivers Injured by Uninsured and Negligent Drivers
Driving without insurance is reckless. If you were injured by another driver, contact a Huntsville car accident attorney at Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C. right away. Our legal team will help you get the compensation you rightfully deserve. Call us at 256-539-3110 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Huntsville and Athens, Alabama, we proudly serve clients throughout North Alabama, Madison County, Limestone County, Marshall County, Jackson County, Morgan County, and Lauderdale County.