What Does Bodily Injury Liability Coverage Pay For?
Every state requires drivers to carry liability insurance to compensate for property damage and bodily injury. Each type of coverage has limits, but bodily injury coverage generally has two types of limits: the total amount to be paid for injury to one person, and the total amount to be paid for all injuries in a single accident. When a driver is at fault for an accident, injured parties can make a claim against the bodily injury portion of the insurance policy. According to a major insurane company carrier, that coverage pays for losses that include:
- Medical expenses — Emergency services, hospitalization, medication, diagnostic tests, and follow-up visits, as well as physical therapy, are covered. Associated costs such as wheelchairs and crutches are also covered.
- Lost income — If the victim is unable to work during the recovery period, insurance pays to compensate for this economic loss.
However, there are additional losses covered under bodily injury liability that the Allstate website does not mention. Victims are entitled to recover for noneconomic damages as well. These include:
- Pain and suffering — Compensation for the injured party's physical pain and psychological suffering
- Loss of quality of life — Compensation for general diminution of life due to burdens or limitations from the injury
- Loss of enjoyment of life — Compensation for specific limitations, such as the inability to partake of a beloved activity, hobby or talent
- Loss of consortium — Compensation for the inability to enjoy conjugal relations with a spouse, depending on state law
- Disfigurement — Compensation for a marred appearance due to scarring, burns, etc.
Often, a victim’s recovery for noneconomic losses will be greater than the damage award for economic losses. Combined, your economic and noneconomic damages can exceed the limits of the at-fault driver’s policy, especially if that driver only carries the statutory minimum level of coverage.
If you’ve had an accident and have questions about what you’re entitled to recover, contact Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban P.C. Our firm has more than 175 years of combined experience with car accident claims. Call us at (888) 351-1038 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.