The state legislature is still working on repealing Florida’s no-fault auto insurance laws, so we don’t know the final outcome. However, what we do know is that if the legislature repeals the laws during the current legislative session, we could be seeing an end to personal injury protection (PIP) as soon as January, 2019.
The laws doing away with PIP, proposed by both the House and the Senate, mandate another form of insurance for automobile drivers – bodily injury liability coverage. Since this change could be coming soon to Florida, it’s a good time for us to become more familiar with what bodily injury liability insurance is and how it works if we’re involved in an automobile accident.
What Is Bodily Injury Liability Coverage?
Bodily injury liability coverage is insurance you purchase to help pay for another person’s injuries from a car accident that you cause. The other type of liability car insurance is property damage insurance, which covers damage to another driver’s vehicle.
Most states require drivers to have a minimum amount of both types of liability coverage, but currently, Florida has no such requirement. However, if the PIP mandate is repealed, the state will require us to have a minimum of either $25,000 or $30,000 of bodily injury coverage plus another $10,000 for property damage.
How is Bodily Injury Liability Insurance Different from PIP?
PIP insurance is no-fault insurance that makes you responsible for your own injuries in an accident no matter who actually caused the accident. Florida PIP pays 80% of your medical expenses up to $10,000 if the injury is considered a medical emergency and only up to $2,500 if your injury is not considered an emergency.
In contrast, bodily injury liability insurance covers other people who are injured when you are at fault in an accident. Typically, it covers emergency care and hospital fees associated with the accident, and in some cases, it also covers follow-up doctor visits and medical equipment costs.
In addition, your insurance will usually pay for legal fees if someone who’s been injured files a lawsuit against you. It could also pay for their lost wages, if they are unable to work, and their pain and suffering from the accident.
Having more than the minimum required bodily injury liability is actually a good idea in case you do get sued for damages. $25,000 or $30,000 may not be enough to cover the total amount of damages if someone is seriously injured, and a higher limit of bodily injury liability insurance will help protect your assets in case of a lawsuit.
Experienced Florida Automobile Accident and Insurance Attorneys
If you’re involved in an automobile accident and need help with your insurance claim or want to discuss your legal options for recovering damages, contact the experienced auto accident attorneys at Malik Law. We’re available 24/7 to help you.