PLPD stands for personal liability and property damage. In most states, drivers are required to carry PLPD insurance at the very minimum. If someone says they only have PLPD insurance, this means that they do not have comprehensive or collision coverage. Accidents can happen at any moment on the road, and it is important to ensure that you are covered. PLPD protects against two aspects of accident liability: injuries and damages to property.
PL = Personal Liability
Personal liability, also called bodily injury, provides coverage for the first aspect of PLPD insurance. It helps to pay for medical and/or funeral costs for injured parties other than yourself. This includes passengers in your own car. Personal liability covers anything from hospital and doctor bills, ongoing treatment and rehabilitation, loss of wages, and/or funeral expenses. If a person injured in the accident decided to file a lawsuit for emotional or physical distress, the insurance policy would help to pay for legal defense fees. Of course, it is important to note that if you harm someone intentionally with your vehicle, your insurance will deny your claim.
Let’s examine the following scenario. You approach a four-way intersection and fail to stop completely before crossing. Unfortunately, you broadside another vehicle that had the right of way. People in each car are injured, including yourself. How will personal liability coverage help? It will assist in the payment of medical bills for everyone except you. In order have your medical fees covered, you also need either medical payments coverage or personal injury protection.
There are two parts to a personal liability policy: the limit per person and the limit per accident. Each state sets the minimum requirements that each driver must have for insurance coverage. The limit per person is the maximum amount your policy will cover for injuries to a single person involved in a single accident. The limit per accident is the maximum amount of coverage for all injured parties in the accident. For example, if you have a limit per person of $15,000 and a limit per accident of $30,000, these two numbers will usually be written on an insurance card as $15,000/$30,000.
Often, the minimum state requirement is quite low. The limits may not be enough coverage. Consider the amount you could afford to pay out of pocket in the event of an accident. It may be that $15,000 will not be enough cover for an injured party’s medical fees. Speak with your independent insurance agent about increasing the limits on your policy.
PD = Property Damage
Property damage insurance is the second component of PLPD insurance. If you are partially or completely at fault for an accident, property damage coverage will help pay the repair or replacement costs. This includes the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident, as well as any other property like a house, garage, or fence. If the other party chooses to file a lawsuit, your property damage insurance will help to cover any legal fees.
Let’s take another look at the previously described scenario. After you ran through a four-way intersection without properly checking for cross-traffic, you not only caused bodily injuries, but also property damage. Your vehicle, the other vehicle, and the boat they were towing all have noticeable dents. With a property damage policy, your insurance company will help to cover the costs to repair the other vehicle and boat. You will receive no financial assistance for your own vehicle. If you are concerned about affording the repair costs for your car, then consider obtaining collision and comprehensive policies.
Just like personal liability, each state sets minimum requirements for property damage insurance. For example, your state might demand that all drivers carry $50,000 worth of coverage. If you cause an accident, your insurance would then pay up to that amount. Your independent insurance agent will likely ask you to consider obtaining coverage greater than the minimum limit. If you accidently crash into an expensive car, or are involved in a multi-vehicle crash, it can be very easy for the property damage costs to exceed $50,000.
Combined or Split Limits?
There are two ways to hold PLPD insurance, either as a combined limit or a split limits. This refers to the amount of coverage per personal liability and property damage. If you choose a combined limit, the total coverage will be represented as a single dollar amount. For example, if you have personal liability limits of $100,000/$200,000 and a property damage limit of $200,000, then a combined limit would be $500,000. Under a split limit, these amounts would be kept separate.
Speak to an Agent
If you want to know more about PLPD, or have any other questions related to car coverage, contact your independent insurance agent today. They will have the knowledge and experience necessary to provide you with the answers you need.
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