insurance

What car insurance does and doesn't cover

Not all states are equal
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Not all states are equal

States also vary in minimum liability requirements and property damage coverage. For example, New Jersey requires drivers to carry liability insurance, personal injury protection and uninsured motorist coverage, according to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. By contrast, Virginia doesn't require drivers to hold liability coverage, but those who opt out must register as an uninsured motorist and pay a $500 fee, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles says.

Desrochers of Hanover Insurance says consumers should study their state's minimum liability requirements and whether their state requires personal injury protection, or PIP, which pays the medical bills of those injured in your car during an accident.

"The majority of states don't require personal injury protection," Desrochers says. "They require medical insurance, which covers medical (and hospital expenses), whereas PIP might cover (lost) wages and other things, too."

What exactly PIP covers varies from state to state, but it can cover costs including funeral expenses and child care bills in addition to medical costs, according to Allstate.


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