Margaret Huntley Last Updated On: June 27, 2023

What Is Bodily Injury Liability?

Bodily injury liability coverage pays for the medical expenses and lost wages of the people hurt in an accident when you are deemed at fault. 

Bodily injury liability insurance is one of the two essential types of liability insurance, the other being property damage liability coverage which will pay for damages to another person’s car.

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What Does Bodily Injury Liability Cover?

As mentioned, bodily injury liability insurance covers the injuries and repercussions of those injuries for other drivers and their passengers when an accident is your fault. But the coverage doesn’t end there. This sort of protection also covers injuries sustained to pedestrians and bystanders.  Bodily injury liability protection also covers:
  • Medical expenses. Includes emergency care, hospital bills, and follow-up visits directly related to the accident. 
  • Loss of income. Includes compensation for income if, as a result of an accident, the other person or people are unable to work. 
  • Legal fees. Includes legal fees incurred if people injured in the accident decide to take you to court.
  • Funeral costs. Includes burial, cremation, and funeral service fees in the event there are fatalities as a result of the accident. 
  • Pain and suffering. Includes payment for emotional distress or chronic pain caused by the accident.

What Bodily Injury Liability Does Not Cover?

It’s important to point out here that if you are at fault, auto insurance bodily injury liability does not cover any lost wages or medical costs incurred by you or your passengers as a result of the accident. You are only covered for possible legal fees. 

Medical expense car insurance is the coverage you require if you want medical expenses covered for you and your passengers. 

How Bodily Liability Insurance Works?

You have to have this type of coverage, but you can choose how much of it you want. There are actually two coverage limits you will have to decide on: the amount your carrier will pay per person injured and the total coverage for injuries per accident. This last limit is the total amount your provider will pay for a claim.

Let’s take a look at what this means. 

If you are found at fault in an accident and have coverage limits of $50,000 per person and a total accident limit of $150,000, then you are protected for $50,000 per individual injured up to a total of $150,000. 

You may see these numbers expressed as 50/150/25. The first two numbers refer to your liability insurance and the last number is the property damage liability.

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Bodily Injury Liability Insurance Could Stand Between You and Bankruptcy if You’re Found At-Fault in an Accident

Bodily injury liability coverage is one of those types of insurance that seems unnecessary until you really need it—and then you will really need it. In fact, bodily injury liability insurance is required in almost every state. Failure to have it can mean you can’t legally drive. 

If this sounds intense, it is. But bodily liability insurance is what stands between you and potential bankruptcy if you’re deemed at fault in an accident.

Requirements for Bodily Liability Insurance

The minimum requirement for bodily liability insurance can vary from state-to-state, but you’re looking at around $25,000/$50,000 as a bare minimum—except in Florida, where you don’t need liability bodily insurance at all. A notable exception, but not the only one. 

Check your state-by-state minimum insurance requirements. 

Get As Much Bodily Injury Coverage As You Can Afford

This is not the place to cut corners on your policy. You may be able to do that with roadside assistance, but not here. It is recommended that you get as much bodily injury coverage as you can comfortably afford. 

The state minimums are just that, and if you nickel and dime this part of your coverage, you could find yourself shouldering hefting, potentially devastating out-of-pocket expenses if you’re at fault in an accident.

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How Much to Expect to Pay for Bodily Liability Insurance?

It’s impossible to give you an exact amount since that will depend on factors determined by your insurance company (e.g. where you live, your driving record), but we can tell you the low end of average is around $100 per month. 

Other Minimum Insurance Types You May Require

Your state may require other types of coverage, in addition to bodily liability insurance. These types include:

  • Comprehensive and collision coverage, which covers physical damage to your vehicle.
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, which protects you if you get in an accident with a driver who does not have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance.
  • Medical payments coverage, which will cover medical bills for yourself and your passengers.
  • Personal injury protection, which covers lost wages and treatment of injuries for you and/or your passengers.

At the end of the day, a bit of bodily liability insurance could be the only thing standing between you and financial ruin. Or—if you’re caught driving without it in a state where it’s necessary—you and a suspended license or fine. 

Even in states where this coverage is not required, it’s not worth the risk to drive without it. 

We can help you get the most affordable bodily liability insurance quote from the best provider for you. Easy! Request a quote now. 

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In most states, yes, it is a legal requirement to drive.

Bodily liability insurance usually starts at around $100 per month. Request a free, personalized quote to get a better idea of how much it will cost you.

No, it only protects drivers and passengers of other vehicles involved in the accident, as well as pedestrians and bystanders, but not you or your passengers.

Medical bills, legal fees, loss of income, funeral costs, and pain and suffering of drivers and passengers of other vehicles involved in the accident, as well as pedestrians and bystanders.


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