If you plan on having a car in Alabama, you need to make sure you know your responsibilities as a car owner and driver. One of the things that you need to consider is getting the proper insurance. Alabama, like many states, requires drivers to carry certain levels of auto insurance, and you need to make sure you’re meeting these requirements. We’ll go over the minimum limits of car insurance in Alabama.
What are the minimum limits of car insurance in Alabama?
You may see the minimum limits of car insurance in Alabama expressed this way – 25/50/25. But what on earth does that mean? Here’s the breakdown of what these three numbers mean:
- The first number, 25, means that drivers must have $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person.
- The second number, 50, means that drivers must have $50,000 of bodily injury liability per accident.
- The third number, 25, means that drivers must have $25,000 of property damage liability.
Okay, so that’s what the numbers represent for minimum levels of car insurance in Alabama…but what do they really mean?
When we say “$25,000 of bodily injury liability per person” we mean that your car insurance would cover up to $25,000 of medical expenses per person injured in an accident in which you are at fault. The second number, $50,000, is the maximum that your car insurance would pay out in bodily injury expenses per accident, so if more than one person was injured, your car insurance would not cover over $50,000 for the total cost of their expenses. The last number, $25,000 of property damage liability, means that your car insurance would cover up to $25,000 of property damage that you cause (for example, the repairs of the other driver’s car.)
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That’s all fine and good, right? But it’s still a bit confusing. Let’s illustrate with a couple of examples. For the sake of these examples, we’ll say that you carry the minimum limits of liability insurance – 25/50/25.
Let’s say you accidentally run a red light and cause an accident. There’s only one driver in the other car, and they have $30,000 of medical expenses. Your car insurance would only cover $25,000 because that’s the per person limit for bodily injury.
But now let’s say that you get into an accident, and you’re at fault. There are three people in the other car. Person 1 has $15,000 in medical expenses. Person 2 has $27,000 in medical expenses. Person 3 has $18,000 in medical expenses. That totals up to $60,000. Unfortunately, your car insurance would only cover $50,000 for bodily injury for the entire accident.
Here’s another scenario: you’re trying to turn left when you hit someone. Fortunately, the other driver is okay and only has minor injuries. However, their car is totaled…and it’s a very expensive car. It’s worth $40,000. Your car insurance would only cover $25,000 of property damage because that’s your property damage liability limit.
Okay. Right about now, you’re probably looking at those numbers and wondering what happens if the expenses from the accident are higher than your limit of coverage. Uh-oh definitely comes to mind, and for good reason. If that’s the case in real life, you could be on the hook for covering the rest of what you owe.
And that leads us into our next point about car insurance in Alabama.
You might want to carry more than the state minimum level of insurance.
In an effort to save money, you might be tempted to carry only the state minimums of insurance. The problem is that these limits might not be enough to truly protect you if you have a bad accident. You could easily exhaust those limits of insurance – medical expenses add up so quickly, especially in the event of a bad wreck. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you don’t have enough insurance to cover the costs you’re obligated to pay following an accident. So, to avoid that, you can consider getting higher limits of insurance. That way you have more protection in case you’re ever at-fault for a car accident.
Our agents can help you see what your insurance options are, and they would be happy to help you compare pricing for raising your limits of insurance. You might be pleasantly surprised to find that you can get much more insurance for a comparatively small increase in your premium. Our team of agents is also pretty good at helping people save money on insurance, so they can help you find insurance options that can get you great coverage for a great rate. Fill out our quote form to get in touch!
What about my own car?
Okay, so another thing you might be wondering…what about MY car? Bodily injury liability and property damage liability are all about the other driver. Not your car.
The coverages that can help you get your car repaired or replaced if something happened to it – collision and comprehensive coverage – aren’t included in the state minimums for car insurance in Alabama. Though Alabama doesn’t require them, it’s still a good idea to think about them to protect your bank account.
(And take note, though the state doesn’t require you to carry collision and comprehensive coverage, your lender might if you have a car payment.)
To briefly explain:
Collision coverage can help you repair/replace your car if it’s damaged in an accident or if you hit something like a pole.
Comprehensive coverage can help you repair/replace your car if it’s damaged by something other than an accident – for example, falling objects like tree branches, fire, theft, vandalism, and animal strikes.
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So. Though the state of Alabama only requires drivers to carry $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 of bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 of property damage liability per accident, it’s not a bad idea to consider getting higher coverage limits than the state requirement. The state minimums could be quickly and easily exhausted in the event of a serious accident. Plus, the sate doesn’t require you to have collision or comprehensive coverage, though your lender might. Car insurance isn’t something to take lightly, so give your coverages and limits some serious thought.
Get a quote for car insurance in Alabama by filling out our online quote form, giving us a call, or messaging us on LiveChat.