What is Liability insurance?
Liability insurance protects you if you cause an accident. If anyone else is injured in the accident, or if someone else’s property is damaged, Liability covers those costs.
Liability is made up of two categories:
Bodily Injury and Property Damage
If you cause an accident and others are injured, Bodily Injury covers their medical expenses, like doctor visits, hospital stays, and physical therapy. It may not cover you or any of your family members in the car with you—you may need to purchase additional bodily injury coverage if you want help paying for your own injuries when you cause an accident.
If you cause an accident that results in damage to someone else’s property, like their car, Property Damage helps cover the repair or replacement costs. It does not cover any damage to your own vehicle or property (that’s what Collision coverage is for).
Do I need Liability insurance?
Yes. You are legally required to have Liability insurance if you drive a car. (The only exception? If you have some extra cash, say, $40,000.) But basically, it’s the minimum amount of coverage you need to legally be driving on the road.
How much Liability do I need?
Every state has their own minimums for Liability. So the least (and cheapest) amount of coverage you have to have depends on where you live. (Select your state on the map to see its minimum requirements.)
When you choose Liability coverage, you choose a limit. The limit is the maximum amount Root will pay out per accident, no matter how many people are injured or how much property is damaged. You then have to pay for any costs above and beyond your limits.
You’ll choose separate limits for Bodily Injury and Property Damage coverage:
Your Bodily Injury limits will consist of the maximum amount Root will pay per person and the maximum amount Root will pay per accident. For example, for a limit of $25,000/$50,000, Root would cover up to $25,000 for each injured person and up to $50,000 total per accident. You would pay for any costs above those limits.
Your Property Damage limit is the maximum amount Root will pay per accident to repair or replace property damage (often the other parties’ cars). For example, if you choose a $25,000 limit, Root would pay up to that amount. You would pay for any costs above and beyond your limit.
So while you’re not legally required to have any more coverage than your state minimum, you might want to consider higher limits if you wouldn’t be able to afford out-of-pocket costs. Your premium—or the amount you pay for your insurance—will be higher, but you’ll get more protection when you need it. It comes down to how much risk you want to take on and what you can afford.
How much does Liability cost?
The cost of Liability coverage varies depending on the limits you choose.
Higher limits will raise your monthly or 6-month insurance rate, but you’ll have more coverage if you ever cause an accident. That lowers your chances of having to pay anything out of pocket.
Lower limits will give you a lower rate, but you will have less coverage. If you ever cause an accident, you would be responsible for any costs above your limit.