Auto Accident Insurance
Which Insurance Policy Pays for my Claims?
To get money from your auto accident insurance claims, you have to know which policy will pay for your auto accident. Below you will find descriptions of the different types of coverage that are offered by the insurance companies. This will help you figure out how much money you can expect from your auto policy and which policy you should file a claim under.
The most common place people turn to after an auto accident is the liability insurance. The liability insurance is designed to pay for damages on behalf of the driver liable (responsible) for the car crash.
If you are responsible for an auto accident, your liability coverage will pay for the other driver's injuries and property damage. Your Bodily Injury Liability coverage will pay for the other drivers:
- Medical expenses
- Lost Income
- Pain and Suffering
In addition, your bodily injury liability will provide you with legal defense, if the other driver decides to file a lawsuit against you.
The damages for the other driver's vehicle or personal property would be paid by your Property Damage Liability.
The property damage and bodily injury liability are designed to compensate the driver who was NOT responsible for the auto accident. If you were injured by another driver, you should start an accident claim against the other driver's liability insurance.
No Fault Insurance
Nearly half of the states have some form of no fault insurance policy. A no fault policy pays for your personal injuries regardless of who caused the car crash.
Since no fault policies pay you regardless of who caused the accident, there are certain restrictions on how much you can get for your medical bills and personal injuries.
To better understand how you can get more money in no fault states read:
No Fault Car Insurance: How to Pay for Your Medical Bills
No Fault States : How to Get Money for Injuries
This pays for your property damage regardless of who caused the accident. However, if you decide to collect under your collision coverage, you will have to pay a high deductible.
Before you decide to file under your collision coverage, make sure you understand what are the benefits and disadvantages.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
This auto accident policy pays for your damages, if you were in an accident with driver who
- Didn't have car insurance.
- Left the scene of the car accident.
- Didn't have enough auto insurance.
To get a better understanding of how this policy works
Medical Payments Coverage
This policy pays for your personal medical expenses plus any passengers who were in involved in the auto accident.
The following people are usually covered under this policy:
- You and any relative that lives with you, who was driving or was a passenger in your vehicle or anyone else's.
- Anyone who was driving with your permission or a passenger in your insured vehicle.
- Any passenger in another vehicle while you or another covered relative is driving.
Getting money from your auto accident insurance claim can take several months or even years, depending on your injuries. Your medical payments coverage helps you by immediately paying for your medical bills and injury related expenses.
However, once your claim is settled, your own insurance company has the right to be reimbursed for the medical payments you received. This means you will have to pay back your company, with the money you receive from your auto accident insurance settlement.
Example: After your car crash you received $2,000 from your medical payments coverage from your own insurance company. This helped you pay for your immediate medical bills and injury expenses, while your accident claim was being settled. Several months later, you settle your auto accident insurance claim against another driver's liability coverage for $10,000.
You will now have to pay back your own company the $2,000 you received in medical payments. This would reduce your final settlement amount to $8,000.
Use Your Health Plan
After a car accident, you may have the option of paying your medical bills through your auto insurance or health plan. Some health plans don't require you to pay them back after you settle a auto accident insurance claim. This is why you should your health plan policy very carefully to see if they will seek any reimbursement.
If your health plan won't file for reimbursement, you should NOT use your medical payments coverage to pay for your medical expenses. This can end up saving you thousands of dollars.