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What Bodily Injury Coverage Means to a Car Insurance Policy

| March 14, 2024 |
Bodily Injury Coverage

Getting in a car accident can be a scary thought. The damage to your car or someone else’s is one thing since it is easy to repair, but what about injuring other people? You worry about driving on a slippery road, losing control of your car, and causing a serious accident that hurts others. That’s why you buy car insurance. The car insurance coverage that protects you when you hurt others in a car accident is called bodily injury coverage. Bodily injury (BI) coverage is for other people’s injuries or deaths for which you are responsible. Bodily injury to others is the major reason why many states have enacted laws requiring car owners to insure their vehicles.

Know the Protection Bodily Injury Coverage Provides

Bodily injury coverage will pay for:

  • Bodily harm, including the medical expenses incurred to treat the injury.
  • Sickness or disease, even if it occurs in the future, is a result of an at-fault car accident.
  • Required care, that is, if the injured party requires at-home care as a result of the accident.
  • Loss of income, which may result from the accident.
  • Death, if it occurs as a result of the injuries sustained in the accident.

Bodily injury coverage may also provide legal defense if you are sued by another party in the accident.

Does Bodily Injury Coverage Include You?

You are the only person not covered by your bodily injury coverage should you cause an accident. Your injury is handled through either your medical health insurance and/or Medical Payment/Personal Insurance Protection insurance.

What if Someone Else is Driving my Car?

Your bodily injury coverage is generally triggered under several conditions:

  • When you are driving a car and are at fault in an accident.
  • When another driver is driving your car with your permission.
  • When you or a member of your immediate family is driving another person’s car with their consent.

What is the Difference between Split Limits and Combined Single Limit?

Bodily injury coverage can be purchased in one of two ways, either split limit or combined single limit.

Split Limit

As the name states, split limit coverage is split into three categories:

  • Bodily injury limit per person
  • Bodily injury limit per accident
  • Property damage limit per accident

So, for example, your policy might state your coverage this way: 150/300/50. Your injury limit per person would be $150,000; injury limit per accident is $300,000; and your property damage limit per accident is $50,000. If you purchase low per-person limits and the injury you cause to the person exceeds the limit, you are still liable.

Combined Single Limit

Combined single-limit coverage provides greater flexibility in paying the claim because it applies a single overall liability limit per accident, regardless of how a claim is comprised between injury, property damage, or loss. A typical single limit could be either $300,000 or $500,000.

What Limits Should I Buy?

Generally, you should purchase the most coverage you can afford, since if your limits are too low, you will be personally liable. Auto liability coverage is mandated by states, but the limits required vary greatly from state to state. However, it’s very common for the state-mandated limits to be far below the amount of bodily injury you could be liable for. A typical minimum limit for bodily injury per person is $25,000, and per accident, $50,000. Those are shockingly low numbers when you consider how much medical costs are today.

Reach out to Stonewall Insurance Group

Feel free to reach out to us or your local independent insurance agency to find the car insurance coverage that is right for your situation. At Stonewall Insurance Group, we will work to find you the best coverage at the most competitive rates based on your unique needs. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions about your Bodily Injury coverage!

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