29 Aug. 2016

The Truth About "Full Coverage" Auto Insurance in Florida

Posted By Darrigo, Diaz & Jimenez

What Is “Full Coverage” Auto Insurance?

You’ve probably heard the term “full coverage insurance.” You might think it accurately describes what the insurance company will pay in the event of an auto accident, but you would be wrong. Full coverage insurance policies do not exist in Florida. What you were sold by the insurance company as a “full coverage policy” will only protect you partially after an accident. In the state of Florida, the law requires drivers to carry policies with liability or no-fault insurance coverage to cover bodily injury and property damages to others in an accident you cause.

A “full coverage” policy typically has collision and comprehensive coverage as well, but that is where the full coverage ends. Collision coverage will pay for damages to your vehicle in the event of an accident (if the at-fault person does not have insurance or you are found liable), while comprehensive coverage is designed to cover vandalism, theft, and other damages that are not caused by an accident. Therefore, a full coverage policy will only include what is legally required to drive in the state of Florida and maybe a little extra to pay for the damages to your car.

In other words, what you know as “full coverage insurance” is no more than basic insurance.

Make Sure You Are Covered After an Accident

What if the at-fault driver does not have insurance but you are badly injured? What if you need a rental car but you did not add it to your policy? Rental is additional coverage; it will not be included in your policy even though your insurance agent said you were buying a full coverage policy. If you are seriously injured in a car accident, the $10,000 from your personal injury protection (PIP)[1] coverage may not be enough to pay for all of your medical bills.

In Florida, PIP insurance only pays for 80% of your medical bills. You are responsible for the remaining 20%. If the at-fault driver does not have insurance, or has minimum liability coverage, who is going to pay for your injuries? Who will pay for the 20% you are responsible for even if the medical bills are under the PIP limits? Your “full coverage” policy will only pay for your car and up to $10,000 in medical treatment. But what about the rest?

For you to be fully covered, you will need to add certain types of coverage to your policy; however, you will be surprised how affordable they could be. For your rental, you should just add it to your policy or have separate insurance, such as AAA. For medical treatment, you should consider adding uninsured motorist (UM) coverage[2] to your policy. This coverage will come into play whenever the at-fault driver is uninsured or underinsured.

Let Darrigo, Diaz & Jimenez Review Your Policy

Review your auto insurance policy and make sure you are paying for a TRUE full coverage policy. Even better, bring your policy to Darrigo, Diaz & Jimenez. Our Tampa car accident attorneys will review it for free to make sure you have the right coverage. We can help protect you and your family in the event of a car accident.

If you have been injured in a car accident, please do not hesitate to call us for a free consultation.

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