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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Joshua is a copywriter at Obrella who for more than 10 years has been creating content about insurance, health care, and more. He helps companies explain complex insurance subjects in simple ways so that customers can make smart buying decisions. He spends way too much time binge-watching Netflix, loves the outdoors and has a cat who tolerates him.

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Reviewed by Joshua Adamson
Joshua Adamson

UPDATED: Oct 25, 2016

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What is Liability Car Insurance?

Liability insurance is an integral part of most car insurance. If you cause an accident, you are held accountable for all damage involved. Liability car insurance covers the repairs and medical expenses of the other driver, but it does not cover your personal auto or property damages.

Liability insurance is for your own protection

The cost of repairs and medical bills from accidents are normally beyond the average person’s ability to cover out of pocket. For this reason, many states require auto liability insurance as the minimum coverage every driver must have. Even if your state doesn’t require it, purchasing liability coverage offers protection by saving you money and helping you avoid suffering significant financial losses in the event of an accident.

Liability insurance covers the repairs and medical expenses of the other driver, but it does not cover your personal damages.

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The two types of auto liability insurance

Auto liability insurance includes bodily injury coverage and property damage coverage. Bodily injury coverage pays for any medical costs incurred by another driver or their passengers in an accident you cause. Property damage coverage helps pay for damage to another person’s property—namely their car—in an accident that is your fault.

The key is that liability insurance covers the repairs and medical expenses of the other driver—it does not cover your personal damages. For that, you’ll need comprehensive coverage.

Car liability insurance limits and requirements

Liability insurance limits are the maximum amounts your car insurance company pays after an accident. Each state that requires liability insurance has its own minimum limit for how much your insurance must pay.
Limits are often written as “#/#/#,” such as 15/25/10. This means the coverage is for up to $15,000 for bodily injuries per person, $25,000 for total bodily injuries (if two or more people are injured in the accident), and $10,000 for property damage.

What liability car insurance limits should you choose? The answer is unique to each individual and their situation. But we can give you a recommendation using our car insurance calculator that should help you get a good idea of what the right amount of coverage is for you.

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Every driver should consider liability car insurance

For protection in the event of an accident, you should purchase at least the minimum amount of liability insurance you can afford, even if your state doesn’t require this coverage. Without it, you will be on the hook to pay for any damages or injuries that result from an accident you cause.

But is it enough? For many drivers, the minimum liability coverage limits aren’t always enough to cover the high costs of accidents. And because liability car insurance doesn’t pay for damages to your car, you may want to consider purchasing comprehensive coverage, which protects your vehicle.

The question you should ask yourself is, “Could I reasonably expect to pay off the value of my car if it were totaled?” If not, you probably need to add comprehensive coverage.

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You can keep liability car insurance affordable

If you have a clean driving record with few violations, your car insurance is likely to be more affordable than if you had several speeding tickets or other violations. In addition, people with a track record of safe driving can expect discounts. Those with violations and at-fault accidents in their histories will pay more for car insurance.

So how do you get cheap liability insurance?

  1. The first step is to shop around for car insurance quotes. Each company may offer you different rates, so we recommend that you get several car insurance quotes to compare them.
  2. You can usually lower your car insurance premiums by raising your deductibles, but liability car insurance often doesn’t include deductibles. Also, keep in mind that raising deductibles means you’ll pay more out of pocket in the case of an accident.

Find Cheap Liability Car Insurance

To learn more about liability coverage and compare insurance policy rates, call an expert agent today at          [mapi-phone /].

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