Commercial Auto Liability Coverage

Liability insurance provides basic coverage when you are at fault in an accident and there is property damage or personal injuries involved.

There are always two specific coverages included in liability insurance: Bodily Injury and Property Damage.

Bodily Injury (BI) – If you are involved in an auto accident and are found to be at fault, the BI section of your Liability insurance policy pays for expenses and costs related to another person’s injuries. Bodily injury pays expenses when a person is injured or killed in the accident. It can provide coverage and protection for a number of issues such as medical care and hospitalization, funeral expenses, long-term care or rehabilitation, and pain and suffering among other things.

Property Damage (PD) – If you are involved in an auto accident that you are at fault for, the PD section of your Liability coverage will pay for damages you inflicted on someone else’s property. For example, PD coverage pays for repair costs to another person’s vehicle if you collided with it. Property damage can also pay the repair or replacement costs related to non-vehicle property damages, such as a house, fencing, or fire hydrants.

If you are sued because of an accident, your liability coverage can also pay the legal defense fees.

Who Needs Liability Insurance?

Liability insurance is generally required by law for all persons who drive a vehicle.

Self-employed truck drivers are required to have liability insurance before they can obtain certain licenses and filings.

Liability Insurance Limits And Other Details

You must select maximum payout limits when you purchase Liability Insurance coverage. Maximum payout limits declare the most that your insurance company will pay for specific items in your policy when you need to make an accident claim.

There are two types of payout limits you can select on your liability policy: Combined single limits and split limits.

Split limits are those that define the most your insurance company will pay for these three items:

  • Maximum Bodily Injury payment per person
  • Maximum Bodily Injury payment for all people in the entire accident
  • Maximum total Property Damage payment for all property in the accident

For example, if you choose split limits of $15,000/$30,000/$10,000:

  • $15,000 is the highest amount your insurance policy will pay each individual who was injured in the accident.
  • $30,000 is the highest amount your policy will pay in total for all injured parties.
  • $10,000 is the maximum amount your insurance policy will pay for all of the property that received damage in the accident, combined.

If you choose a combined single limit (CSL) amount for your business auto insurance, then there is just one total that is used as the maximum payout amount per accident. Instead of putting a cap on the total that can be paid for property damages in the accident for example, there is simply a total amount that will be paid for the single accident regardless of whether it is for property damages or bodily injuries.

As an example, let’s say you choose a liability insurance policy with a combined single limit of $100,000. If you cause an accident, your insurance company will pay a maximum of $100,000 for all combined damages that you created. That could mean it pays $100,000 in bodily injury alone, or it pays $90,000 for property damages and $10,000 for bodily injuries.