What is considered full coverage auto insurance in Florida? This type of policy goes beyond the minimum coverage requirements established by state law. With full coverage, a driver and his or her automobile will receive insurance protection in most damage, injury, and loss situations.
Minimum Coverage Requirements in Florida
Drivers who live in Florida must have at least $10,000 in personal injury protection (PIP) coverage and $10,000 in property damage liability coverage per accident. You must also prove you have the means to pay at least $10,000 in bodily injury liability per person and $20,000 per accident under the Florida Financial Responsibility Law. According to WalletHub, this distinguishes Florida’s insurance coverage from the no-fault system in most other states, where you must have bodily injury liability through your auto insurance policy.
Your PIP policy can pay more than just your medical bills in Florida. You can also file a claim with this type of insurance for funeral expenses for a family member who dies in an auto accident, medical devices such as wheelchairs that you need during recovery, in-home health care expenses, and lost wages if you are out of work because of your injury. To make a claim under your PIP policy, you must see a health care provider within 14 days of the accident.
Florida has higher-than-average auto insurance rates compared to U.S. rates overall. Residents of states requiring bodily injury policies often pay more than drivers in states that do not require this type of insurance.
Because Florida has many seasonal residents, it’s important to note that you must have an auto insurance policy in the state if you drive there more than 90 days within any given 365 days. This applies even if you have an out-of-state driver’s license and registration.
Full Coverage in Florida
Full coverage includes both the minimum liability coverage amounts described above as well as comprehensive and collision coverage. Comprehensive coverage pays to fix your car if it gets damaged by a natural disaster, animal attack, flood, fire, vandalism, or theft. Collision covers the damage to your vehicle if you get into an accident (unlike liability, which covers only the other driver’s expenses if you cause an accident).
According to Full Coverage Auto Insurance, Florida drivers pay an average of $1257 per year or $104 a month for full coverage auto insurance. The site breaks down the premium cost as follows:
- $32 for medical payment coverage.
- $117 for comprehensive insurance.
- $188 for PIP insurance.
- $283 for collision protection.
- $858 for liability coverage.
You can save on your policy by shopping around and seeking available driver discounts. Rates also vary significantly based on driver demographics. Young drivers and those with a history of violations and claims pay more than older drivers who have no tickets or at-fault accidents.
Optional Auto Insurance Coverage
You can customize your Florida full coverage auto insurance policy with other types of coverage. Examples include roadside assistance programs, rental car coverage, GAP insurance to pay off your auto loan if you total your vehicle, and uninsured motorist coverage that pays the cost of an accident with a driver who does not have insurance.
Some drivers opt for MedPay, which provides additional medical payment coverage beyond PIP insurance. However, this type of insurance does not cover lost wages if you are out of work because of your injuries.
The No-Fault Insurance System in Florida
Under Florida’s no-fault system, your PIP insurance pays for your injuries no matter which driver’s actions led to the collision. However, you can still sue the at-fault driver for your medical bills and other related expenses if you have permanent injuries or your medical bills or lost income total more than $10,000 after an accident.
If you are the at-fault driver, your optional bodily injury policy will pay the damages in this type of lawsuit. Without bodily injury insurance, you must settle out of pocket.
NerdWallet indicates that in this situation, you first file a claim with your PIP policy. This coverage pays up to 80 percent of your medical expenses. The at-fault driver’s liability policy kicks in to pay the remainder if you have serious injuries, defined by Florida as:
- Full disability for at least 90 days.
- Significant loss of function to a body function, organ, system, or member.
- Bone fracture.
If a lawsuit occurs after an auto accident, the at-fault driver’s bodily injury coverage can pay for the court-ordered settlement as well as the other driver’s legal fees. A driver who has only minimum auto coverage must pay out of pocket for these costs.
Florida also recognizes comparative fault, in which two drivers share responsibility for an accident. If the injured driver files a lawsuit and the court finds he or she has 10 percent of fault while the other driver has 90 percent, the plaintiff could recoup only 90 percent of the injury-related expenses.
Most Affordable Auto Insurance Coverage in Florida
These companies have the lowest average annual rates for full coverage auto insurance in Florida:
- Allstate: $4178
- Direct Auto: $5235
- GEICO: $3560
- MetLife: $5699
- State Farm: $3265
If you have poor credit, you might struggle to find affordable full coverage auto insurance in Florida. Try these companies for the lowest average annual rates:
- Allstate: $4926
- Direct Auto: $3068
- GEICO: $3711
- Progressive: $4950
- State Farm: $3304
Recent accidents also substantially raise your auto insurance rates. In this situation, Florida drivers will find the lowest average annual rates from:
- Allstate: $3745
- Direct Auto: $4171
- GEICO: $2670
- MetLife: $4376
- State Farm: $2410
As you get older and become more experienced behind the wheel, you can qualify for lower auto insurance rates. Experts recommend looking for new quotes once a year to get the best premium prices.
Full coverage auto insurance provides the highest level of protection for your personal assets in the event of a serious auto accident. Explore these policies if you drive in Florida and want to shield your financial freedom from the cost of a collision.
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