Personal Automobile Insurance Overview
Personal automobile insurance is purchased for cars, trucks, and other vehicles. Its primary use is to provide protection against losses incurred as a result of traffic accidents and against liability that could be incurred in an accident.
What Coverage Is Required In Florida?
In Florida, to purchase a tag, you must carry:
A minimum of $10,000 of Personal Injury Protection (PIP).
A minimum of $10,000 of Property Damage Liability.
However, Florida’s Financial Responsibility law requires drivers to be financially responsible for bodily injuries to limits of $10,000 per person with a maximum of $20,000 per accident. Unless a driver or owner of a vehicle has sufficient cash reserves up to $30,000 to meet the financial responsibility requirement, it is a very good idea to purchase Bodily Injury Liability. The State minimum required is equal to: 10/20/10 (Bodily Injury/Property Damage Liability).
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
PIP was designed to help reduce the need for Floridians to sue to cover injuries resulting from automobile accidents. PIP covers the named insured and other members of the household.
80% of medically necessary expenses; must be used within 14 days of the accident.
60% of lost wages (coverage could be excluded in order to obtain lower rates).
$2,500 for non-emergency treatment (chiropractor or physical therapy).
Up to $5,000 in death benefits.
The basic PIP limit is $10,000, however, additional PIP may be purchased or extended.
Physical Damage Coverage
This coverage protects your vehicle in case of accident/incident by a covered peril. You must select a deductible to maintain for this coverage. This coverage is usually mandatory if your auto is financed or leased.
These coverages are applied as follows:
Comprehensive – In most cases applies for perils such as: theft, flood, falling objects, etc.
Collision – This applies mostly for collision with another vehicle or property.
Optional coverages available:
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM) – This coverage must be equal or less than your BI limit if accepted. Otherwise it must be rejected by written statement.
Medical Payments – Coverage is applicable in excess of PIP regardless of fault.
Towing – Towing services are only available for towing an automobile in case of an accident.
Road Side Services – Mechanical assistance in the case of mechanical breakdown.
Rental Car Reimbursement – Applicable in the case where the insured automobile is in the shop for repair due to an accident.
Special Equipment – Any non-original manufacture equipment that was installed by the insured.
Commercial Truck Insurance Policies
Commercial truckers also defaults on the commercial auto as depending on the type of your business you may qualify for coverages such as:
Tow truck insurance: If your business involves towing vehicles, you’ll need special policies in place. These include "On Hook Towing"(to cover damages caused to vehicles that you tow) and Garagekeeper’s Legal Liability (covers your business when you store cars for parking or service).
Motor truck cargo insurance: Does your business involve moving cargo? You’ll need a special policy to protect you in the event that damages are caused to the cargo.
Types of Vehicles Covered
Commercial auto insurance covers a variety of vehicles that you rely on to serve your customers. Often times, these vehicles include trucks such as:
Since boat and motorcycle insurance are not mandatory in the state of Florida, most insurance carriers try to offer many discounts that are based on a variety of factors.
What Does Florida Boat Insurance Cover?
Most boat policies cover physical damage to the hull, sails, machinery, furnishings, and most other equipment that is normally used on board. Most dangers are covered including vandalism, malicious mischief, and damage which results from collision or sinking. Insurance needs differ depending on the type, age, or value of the boat or watercraft you own. Your policy will explain in detail what is covered and what is specifically excluded.
What About Liability Coverage for Your Boat policy?
You are also insured against liability losses. You are covered for damage you may cause to another boat, yacht, personal water craft, sailboat or dock, and for bodily injury or death to another person while operating your vessel.
Under most boat policies, the boat trailer is covered against physical loss or damage from any external cause.
What Does Motorcycle Insurance Cover?
Florida's No-Fault, or "PIP Law" does not apply to motorcycles, "trikes" or motorcycles with sidecars. HOWEVER, the Financial Responsibility FR Law applies to ALL motor vehicles in Florida, including motorcycles. Thus the voluntary purchase of motor vehicle liability insurance by an owner, operator or owner/ operator is highly recommended. If you crash into another person's property (i.e. their car, a house, a mailbox, etc.) you are going to be held liable for all damages and you may also be fined, have your license suspended/revoked, bike impounded, be labeled a "high risk" operator, and/or other various penalties. Notice that the excerpt says you may be subject to "civil court judgment". If a judge deems it necessary, you may be sentenced to serve time in jail or other sentences at the court's discretion.