COMPULSORY INSURANCE – Coverage You Must Buy
This guide, taken from the Division of Insurance, Consumer Service Department of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, explains the specialized terminology you’ll find in each part of your Massachusetts Auto Insurance policy. This MA Auto Insurance Coverage Guide is a quick reference on the types of car insurance coverage you can buy.
1. Bodily Injury to Others
This pays for damages (e.g., medical expenses, pain and suffering) to anyone injured or killed by your car only in an accident that occurs in Massachusetts, up to a basic limit of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident. Injuries to the driver or passengers in your car are not covered under this part.
2. Personal Injury Protection – PIP
This coverage pays up to $8,000 to you or anyone you let drive your car, anyone living in your household, passengers and pedestrians, no matter who causes the accident. PIP pays for medical expenses, replacement services and 75 percent of any lost wages. Your PIP coverage pays for medical expenses in excess of $2,000 that are not paid for by your medical insurance, only after these expenses have been submitted to the medical insurer to determine what it will and will not pay. Your PIP coverage will not pay for expenses over $2,000 that your medical insurer would have paid if the injured person had sought treatment in accordance with the terms of your health plan.
3. Bodily Injury Caused By An Uninsured Auto
This coverage protects you, anyone you let drive your car, household members and passengers (unless covered by another Massachusetts policy with similar coverage) against losses caused by an uninsured or unidentified (hit-and-run) driver. A minimum limit of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident is required. This coverage does not pay for property damage or damage to your auto.
4. Damage to Someone Else’s Property
This part pays for damage to another person’s property and costs associated with the loss of use of that property, when you, a household member or another authorized driver cause an accident. A minimum limit of $5,000 is required.
OPTIONAL INSURANCE – Coverage You May Buy
5. Optional Bodily Injury to Others
This optional coverage extends your liability protection (the basic $20,000/$40,000 limits under Bodily Injury to Others) up to the amount you purchase under this part. This option provides coverage for accidents beyond Massachusetts to anywhere in the United States, its territories or possessions, or Canada. This coverage also pays for damages suffered by guests in your auto.
6. Medical Payments
This part covers medical expenses for you, your household members and passengers, over and above amounts covered by personal injury protection, no matter who caused the accident. The minimum amount you can buy is $5,000 if insuring an automobile and $500 if insuring a motorcycle.
Collision coverage pays for collision damage to your car, less any applicable deductible, no matter who causes the accident. If your car is financed, your lender may require this coverage as well as a particular deductible amount.
8. Limited Collision
This part also pays for collision damage to your car. You must not be more than 50 percent at fault, and the owner of the other vehicle must be identified.
Comprehensive coverage pays for damage to or loss of your car, less any applicable deductible, resulting from perils such as fire, theft, vandalism and striking an animal, but not collision. This coverage allows up to $15 a day (to a limit of $450) for substitute transportation (rental or other transportation costs including taxi, bus and train fare) until your stolen auto is recovered. Personal property is not covered unless it is permanently installed in your car, such as a tape deck. If your car is financed, your lender may require this coverage.
10. Substitute Transportation
This coverage reimburses up to $15 a day for car rental or transportation costs including taxi, bus and train fare (up to $450), while your car is undergoing collision or covered repairs. Coverage of up to $100 a day (up to a limit of $3,000) is available for an additional cost. Even if you have this coverage, some car rental agencies may refuse to rent to you if you are under a certain age, are a poor credit risk, do not have an acceptable credit card or have an unacceptable driving record.
11. Towing and Labor
Towing and labor coverage pays up to $25 for towing and labor charges each time your car breaks down whether or not there is an accident involved. You are covered only for the on-site labor costs at the breakdown site (not any parts) needed to get your car running again. Coverage of up to $50 per disablement is available for additional cost.
12. Bodily Injury Caused By An Underinsured Auto
This coverage pays for bodily injury damages to you, household members and passengers, unless they have a policy of their own, or are covered by a Massachusetts auto policy of another household member with similar coverage. The accident must be caused by someone without enough bodily injury coverage. It pays you up to the difference between the total amount collected from the bodily injury liability insurance covering the owner and driver of the other car, and the limits you purchased for this coverage. This coverage will NOT pay for damage to property.
More Detailed Information
For in-depth information on the above MA auto insurance coverage options, contact Eagle Trust Insurance. Follow our blog to receive additional information on this and other MA auto insurance topics.