Everything you Need to Know About Car Insurance Coverage Limits in Massachusetts

Western Mass Auto Insurance does more than help drivers obtain car insurance. Anyone can do it. We will help you choose the right policy that provides the right coverage to ensure your family is protected.

We help people understand Massachusetts car insurance limits. This information provides a general description of basic concepts in auto insurance. This information is not meant to cover every exclusion and condition of an insurance policy. Your agent at Western Mass Auto Insurance should discuss your specific needs. Keep in mind that the actual coverage will be governed by your insurance policy.

Understand Your Auto Insurance Coverage Limits

Auto insurance limits and coverage limits refer to the maximum amount that an insurer will pay for a loss covered by your policy. Your policy costs will increase if your limits are higher than your insurer’s. In the event of an accident, you will be responsible for paying more. Lower limits will reduce your premium payments, but you run the risk of incurring higher out-of-pocket costs in the case of an accident.

It’s not as difficult as it sounds. The decision to balance financial risk and the cost of your policy should be made by you, based on your individual needs. Consider the car’s value and how much you are willing to spend in case of an accident, total loss, or other losses. If you’re in an accident that results in injuries, consider how much money you can pay for your medical bills. Western Mass Auto Insurance is happy to answer any questions you may have.

People often refer to coverage limits as “per person” or “per accident” limits for bodily injuries liability coverage. They also include the property damage liability limits. Massachusetts law requires you to have Bodily Injury Liability limits at least $20,000 per person and $40,000 per incident, and Property Damage Liability coverage of at least $5,000. Coverage must be at least $20,000 per person and $40,000 per incident for Bodily Injury Caused by Uninsured Automobiles. You will need to have $8,000 worth of PIP coverage. Important note: The minimum Bodily Injuries Liability coverage that the state requires pays for Massachusetts-based accidents only. You can purchase optional coverage to ensure you have coverage for bodily injury liability outside Massachusetts. These coverage limits are described below:

Bodily Injury to Others

This covers you for accidental injury to others and death (not your passengers) that is caused by your car’s operation. However, it only applies if the accident takes place in Massachusetts. The basic coverage will cover you up to $20,000 per person, and $40,000 per incident. Optional bodily injury liability coverage provides higher limits, and also covers accidents outside Massachusetts. For more information about optional coverages, see below.

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

Every Massachusetts resident must have personal injury protection (PIP) when they register a car. It covers the owner of the vehicle and any other persons who are hurt or killed in an automobile accident, regardless of fault. PIP can be used to pay up to $8,000 for injuries and other losses. Tort defendants will not be liable for damages if the $8,000 covers injuries sustained by the injured party.

Bodily Injury from Uninsured Auto

This policy protects you and anyone who you allow to drive your car, household members, and passengers, (unless another Massachusetts policy provides similar coverage). It also covers you against any losses caused by uninsured, unidentified (“hit-and-run”) drivers. The minimum coverage is $20,000 per person, $40,000 per accident. For greater protection, you should consider purchasing higher limits. Optional coverage for bodily injuries caused by an uninsured vehicle (where the at-fault driver has liability insurance but not enough to cover you) is something that you should consider. For more information about optional coverages, see below.

Property Damage

This covers damage to property caused by you, a household member, or another authorized driver. An annual limit of $5,000 is necessary.

Insurance professionals sometimes use these numbers as shorthand to make it easy for you to refer to them in the order given above. A policy with liability limits 100/300/50 would include $100,000 for bodily injuries per person, $300,000.00 limits for bodily injuries per accident, and $50,000 for property damage liability per incident.

Major Types Of Auto Insurance Optional Coverage

Western Mass Auto Insurance offers additional coverage options. These are some of the most common optional coverages our customers purchase:

  • Comprehensive coverage is designed to protect your vehicle from any damage not caused by a collision with another vehicle. This covers natural disasters, storms, fires, and vandalism as well as damages caused by hitting animals.
  • Collision insurance covers the cost of repairing or replacing your car after it is in an accident with another vehicle or stationary object. Collision does not cover damage to your vehicle or another person’s vehicle that you operate with the permission of its owner. Collision does not cover damage to other vehicles. For those damages, you will need property damage liability coverage. Collision does not cover mechanical breakdowns and wear and tear.
  • Coverage for uninsured or underinsured motorists. You may be in trouble if you were not at fault for an accident and the other party does not have insurance or doesn’t have enough. This coverage will pay for your vehicle’s repair costs or your medical expenses. Massachusetts law requires that you have at least $20,000 for each person and $40,000 for each accident for bodily injury caused by uninsured auto coverage (i.e. Uninsured motorist coverage). Additional coverage is not required.
  • Coverage for substitute transportation while your car is being repaired from a collision or comprehensive claim.  Rental limits start at $15/$450 maximum and go up to $100/$3,000 maximum.
  • Additional coverage for medical expenses beyond mandatory PIP coverage. This includes reasonable expenses for medical and funeral services (1) incurred in an accident by any person in your vehicle, and (2) by you and any household members if your car is struck by another vehicle or while you are in an automobile that was involved in an accident. Limits range from $1,000 to $25,000.
  • Insurance that covers loan/lease gaps. This type of insurance is for you if your car has been totaled to the point that the cost of fixing it exceeds its actual value. However, you still have to make payments. While Collision and Comprehensive coverages do not pay more than the vehicle’s actual cash value at the time of the accident (less your deductible), you may owe more on your loan or lease. Covered Collision and Comprehensive loss loan/lease gaps coverage will pay the difference between your actual car value and the remaining balance of your loan or lease to help you get off this financial burden as soon as possible.

If you have additional questions about Massachusetts auto insurance or would like to talk to someone about your personal situation, contact Western Mass Auto Insurance today.

Find out how to get car insurance quotes and find the best car insurance. Get a free quote online or call us to check out our FAQ guide at car insurance FAQs in Massachusetts.

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