You may have a false sense of security in the immediate aftermath of a motor vehicle collision in Virginia. You trust that insurance will pay for your property damage cost and any injuries that you suffer because of the wreck.
It may only be after you file your initial claim that you realize insurance will leave you with substantial financial expenses that you have to cover yourself. While car insurance is crucial after a motor vehicle collision, the coverage is far from perfect.
What the state requires often falls short
Virginia lawmakers have actually recently increased the amount of coverage required by all drivers, but one could easily argue that they did not go far enough when updating the law. Currently, drivers need to have $20,000 worth of property damage liability coverage. Bodily injury coverage needs to provide at least $30,000 of compensation when one person gets hurt or $60,000 of coverage per crash when there are multiple people affected.
However, if you drive a newer vehicle, you can guess the issue already. After all, the average sale price of a new vehicle in 2022 is over $48,000, which is more than double the amount of property damage coverage on a minimal insurance policy. Anyone who has seen a line-item invoice provided after an overnight hospital stay can also easily understand how $30,000 of medical coverage could be far too little for the costs that come from a back injury or a head injury.
You are at the mercy of the other driver
The low limits for coverage are problematic enough, but the liability-based insurance system is also a concern for drivers hurt in crashes. You don’t control what coverage is available to you after a crash unless you buy extra protection on your own policy.
Liability insurance requires that you depend on the other driver. They could be the kind of person who cancels their policy just to save a few dollars every month. When you understand these shortcomings, you can more critically review your current insurance policy and determine if it might be time to expand your coverage.
Unfortunately, some people only perform a review of their insurance policy when they need protection. If you have already been in a crash and don’t have underinsured motorist protection or other additional coverage, your best option for full compensation may require that you take the other driver to court. Educating yourself about the way insurance works after a Virginia car crash can help you more fully cover your collision expenses.