auto

Auto insurance terms and definitions

Liability insurance: This part of an auto insurance policy covers the injuries and damage you cause to other drivers and their vehicles when you are at fault in an accident. If you are taken to court, liability coverage will apply to your legal costs. Most states require drivers to carry liability coverage. The amount of coverage varies by state.

Limits: The maximum amount of benefits your insurer will pay for a loss as designated in your insurance policy.

Medical payments coverage: This part of an auto insurance policy pays for medical expenses and lost wages to you and any passengers in your vehicle after an accident. It is also known as personal injury protection (PIP).

No-fault insurance: If you live in a state with no-fault insurance regulations, your auto insurance policy pays for your injuries no matter who caused an accident. No-fault insurance states include Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Utah and Washington, DC..

Personal property liability: The part of an auto insurance policy that pays for damages you may cause to another's car or property.

Personal injury protection (PIP): This part of an auto insurance policy pays for medical expenses and lost wages to you and any passengers in your vehicle after an accident. PIP is also known as medical payments coverage.

Premium: The amount charged for an insurance policy. A premium is based on the type and amount of coverage you choose. Other factors affecting your insurance premium include your age, marital status, your driving and credit records, the type of car you drive and whether you live in an urban or rural area. Premiums vary by insurance company.

Rental reimbursement: This part of a policy pays for the cost of a similar-sized rental car when your car is in a repair shop for covered damage.

Surcharge: A charge added to your auto policy premium after a traffic violation or an accident in which you were at fault.

Underinsured driver: This part of an auto insurance policy covers injuries to you caused by a driver without enough insurance to pay for your medical expenses. Some states include damages to your car in this coverage.

Uninsured driver or motorist: This part of an auto insurance policy covers injuries to you caused by a driver without insurance. Most states require drivers to carry uninsured motorist coverage. Some states include damages to your car in this coverage.

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