Which Types of Car Insurance Are Required in Florida?
Required vs Non-Required Auto Insurance Coverage in Florida
Like other states, Florida law requires motorists carry auto insurance with minimum limits. Not all types of insurance coverage are required, however. In addition to mandatory insurance coverage, you can choose better protection with a variety of optional forms of coverage to protect you against risks like uninsured motorists. Here's a straightforward explanation of the different coverage options and which are and are not mandatory.
Required Auto Insurance Coverage in Florida
|Coverage Type||Florida Requirements|
|Bodily Injury Coverage||$10,000 per person and $20,000 per accident*|
|Property Damage Coverage||$10,000 per accident|
|Uninsured Motorist Coverage||$10,000 per person and $20,000 per accident*|
|Personal Injury Protection||$10,000|
Personal Injury Protection
The other type of car accident insurance you are required to carry in Florida is personal injury protection or PIP, sometimes no-fault insurance. The Florida No-Fault Law requires motorists carry $10,000 in PIP coverage which pays your medical bills if you are involved in an accident, no matter who is at fault. PIP insurance typically covers you as the driver as well as your passengers and any pedestrians who are hurt in a collision. If you are riding in or driving someone else's car, your own PIP policy will still cover you. Sometimes PIP can also replace lost wages.
PIP covers most medical bills such as medical care, surgical treatment, hospital bills, medication, rehab expenses, ambulatory costs, and diagnostics. Only 80% of your medical expenses are covered, however, with benefits capped at $2,500 for non-emergencies. If you are disabled, PIP coverage pays for 60% of lost wages up to $10,000. PIP coverage essentially "restarts" every year with the same benefit amount available each year.
Is Property Damage Coverage Required in Florida?
Florida does require property damage liability coverage which pays for repairs if you cause a car accident that damages someone else's property or vehicle. This coverage does not pay for damages to your own vehicle in an accident, even if you were not at fault. In this case, the other driver's property damage coverage would pay for your repairs.
Under Florida law, you must have at least $10,000 of property damage liability coverage. A higher coverage limit is recommended, however, as $10,000 doesn't go far in an accident. Even minor damage to a bumper that requires replacement can cost $3,500 or more, depending on the vehicle. With an accident more serious than a fender-bender, damages will likely far exceed $10,000.
Is Bodily Injury Coverage Required in Florida?
Bodily Injury Coverage
Aside from New Hampshire, which doesn't actually require auto insurance, Florida is the only state that does not require Bodily Injury Liability (BI) coverage to drive an automobile. This type of coverage pays for injuries you cause to other people in an accident, including pedestrians, other drivers, and passengers. It's designed to pay for medical expenses, lost wages, and even legal expenses.
Even a fairly minor accident can lead to serious injuries and very high medical bills. It's always a good idea to opt for bodily injury coverage with at least $100,000 in coverage per person and $300,000 per accident. Without coverage, if you cause an accident that injures someone else, you can be sued for their damages and your personal assets will be at risk.
Note: You may be required to carry bodily injury insurance if you are convicted of a DUI in Florida.
If you choose to drive without BI coverage, it is important to know that Florida has a Florida Financial Responsibility Law which requires that a person, who is at fault for an accident, must provide financial coverage of at least $10,000 per person and $20,000 per accident. Meaning, if you cause an accident which results in bodily injuries to another person(s), you must either have BI insurance or post a bond for the required amount of coverage.
Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage Required in Florida?
An important but optional type of auto insurance coverage is uninsured motorist (UM) coverage. This coverage pays for your medical expenses if you are hit by a driver without insurance or a hit-and-run driver. UM coverage can also pay for lost wages, disability, long-term care, and pain and suffering. In an accident, the at-fault driver's insurance typically pays for these expenses, but you may be left paying out of pocket if the driver does not have insurance if you do not carry uninsured motorist coverage.
It's estimated that almost one-quarter of Florida drivers have absolutely no car insurance. That's a very high risk to take if you are involved in an accident. While health insurance can pay for medical treatment after you are injured in a collision, you may still be left with high out-of-pocket costs including deductibles and co-pays. Health insurance also won't help with lost wages and disability like UM coverage.
Is Collision & Comprehensive Coverage Required in Florida?
Most of these forms of car insurance coverage focus on bodily injury, medical expenses, and lost wages, but a car accident also comes with another type of damage: physical damage to your car. Collision and comprehensive coverage both cover different types of damage to your vehicle. Both types of coverage require a deductible which you must pay when you make a claim before your policy begins to payout.
Collision coverage covers damage to your car due to a collision with another vehicle or a stationary object. This type of coverage pays for damages if you hit another car, crash into a truck, hit a pothole, or your car rolls over.
Comprehensive coverage pays for damages to your car due to covered events such as vandalism, hail, theft, or wind damage. You may also make a comprehensive claim if an animal collides with your vehicle, a falling tree limb hits your car, or your car is stolen.
Is Underinsured Motorist Coverage Required in Florida?
Underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage is similar to UM coverage except it protects you when you are involved with an at-fault driver who does have insurance but lacks the coverage to fully pay for your damages.
Nearly half of drivers in Florida have insurance limits of less than $25,000 per person. If you are involved in an accident with an underinsured motorist, it means they do not have enough insurance coverage to pay for your damages. While you can use PIP coverage to help with your medical bills, it will only cover 80% up to $10,000. To recover more than $10,000, you must bring a claim against an at-fault driver -- or make a claim against your underinsured motorist coverage.
*The information provided on this page is based on auto insurance regulations in Florida as of 12/01/2019 - County Line Chiropractic Medical & Rehab Center is not liable for any insurance updates or changes in regulations to the Florida Auto Insurance Laws or Traffic Laws and ultimately, it is up to Florida vehicle operators to know relevant auto insurance regulations according to their providers.
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