How Does California Car Insurance Work?
Car insurance is required for all drivers in the state of California. If you are a driver and do not have insurance, then you are currently driving illegally in the state of California and could be subject to fines or even a temporary loss of driving privileges. Searching for the right auto insurance plan can feel incredibly overwhelming and, in your search, it is important to understand what plan offers the best coverage in the case of an accident.
California has a minimum policy liability requirement for all auto insurance. This minimum requirement is the 15/30/5 rule. The rule sets forth the minimum amount an insurer must cover for the below:
- $15,000 is the minimum for injury or death of an individual
- $30,000 is the minimum for injury or death of more than one individual
- $5,000 is for property damage
Although these are the minimum requirements for auto insurance coverage, most plans offer a greater amount of coverage for accidents. In addition to the required coverage in the state, most insurance companies also offer additional coverage add-ons that are beneficial in the event of an accident.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Although it is illegal to drive without insurance in the state of California, there are still drivers that may do it. Getting in an accident that is the fault of another driver who is uninsured or underinsured can cause serious consequences for a driver that may suffer from a personal injury or property damage as a result of the accident.
An uninsured individual will not be covered with respect to any damage to your vehicle and will not have insurance to provide payment for any medical bills that accrue because of the accident. An underinsured individual may have the minimum requirement that California allows for auto insurance, however that may not be enough to cover the damage done to your vehicle or cover your medical bills. In this case it is good to have an uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage add-on to your insurance plan that way you will be covered in the event of an accident that involves and uninsured or underinsured driver.
Med Pay Coverage
Coverage for medical payments is another type of insurance that can be added to a plan should a driver opt-in. Med Pay insurance has many advantages from covering medical bills and funeral expenses to offering coverage when a driver is outside of their vehicle. If an individual is insured with Med Pay and they are hit or injured by a car while a pedestrian or they are injured while taking public transit, either they or their family members are able to claim damages.
Comprehensive and Collision Insurance
Another additional form of coverage that a driver can opt into is comprehensive and collision insurance. Both of these types of insurance are not required under California law; however, they do have a lot of pros for those that acquire it.
This will cover damages that happen to a car outside of an accident. Some of this damage can include, but are not limited to:
- A tree falling on your car
- Vandalism or theft
- Damage from a natural disaster such as a fire or an earthquake
- Any damage that occurs which is not at the fault of the policyholder.
This will cover any accident-related damages that your car may incur. A few examples of situations that are covered are, but not limited to:
- Colliding with another vehicle
- Colliding with a pole, or object
- Colliding with a pedestrian
There are many forms of coverage opt ins to consider when purchasing an auto insurance plan. As a driver in the state of California it is important that you understand your policy before getting into an accident. Contact our experienced team of accident attorneys today to learn more about any legal remedies available to you if you have been involved in an automobile accident.