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Maryland Car Insurance Coverage

If you're planning to operate a motor vehicle in Maryland, it's important that you know your options for car insurance coverage in the state. While having the minimum amounts of Maryland insurance coverage that the state requires is important, you may find that you want or need more coverage. Since more coverage equals more protection, it's always good to look into your auto insurance options.

Required Car Insurance Coverage

Maryland requires more auto insurance than many states, because it wants to make sure that its residents are safe when they're on the road. While this may make obtaining insurance more difficult initially, once you have it you can rest assured that you and others will be taken care of in case of an accident.

The first type of insurance that Maryland requires is liability coverage. This is insurance that pays for other peoples' damages if you are responsible for an accident where they are injured or killed, or where their vehicle is damaged or destroyed. It covers costs that you would otherwise be held personally liable for.

This type of coverage comes in two subtypes. The first of these is bodily injury liability coverage. This insurance pays the medical costs of people other than yourself when they are injured in an accident you caused. Usually, this coverage is used to pay their emergency room bills, hospital bills, doctor's charges, and medication costs. However, it will also pay for funeral costs, lost wages, and in-home health care if that is required.

The second type of liability coverage is property damage liability insurance. This coverage pays when someone else's property is damaged in an accident you caused. The property most commonly covered by this type of insurance is another vehicle that was involved in the accident, but it can also be used to pay for damages to buildings, fences, yards, etc. that resulted from the accident.

Maryland also requires all drivers to carry uninsured motorist coverage. This is insurance that pays your costs if you are involved in an accident caused by a driver without insurance. Though that driver would be operating his vehicle illegally in the state, he could still cause you major damage. Having this coverage allows you to get medical care and a repaired or replaced vehicle without having to empty your own bank accounts.

Finally, Maryland requires all drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. This insurance kicks in when you are in an accident, regardless of who is at fault. While someone may eventually be determined to be at fault, this insurance will start paying before that is determined, meaning you can get medical care and car repairs before that is figured out. In addition, if you are injured in an accident and unable to work, your PIP coverage will help you out. According to the terms of your particular policy, it will reimburse you for lost wages up to the policy's maximum amount.

Other Maryland Car Insurance Coverage

In addition to the types of auto insurance that Maryland requires, there is more insurance available in the state. These types of coverage, while optional, can offer you a lot more protection than you will have if you only purchase the required kinds.

Property damage coverage covers the costs of repairing or replacing your vehicle in situations other than the ones outlined above. It comes in two types. Some people choose to purchase both kinds, while others may only buy one or the other.

The first kind of property damage coverage is called collision insurance. This insurance will pay to fix or replace your car if it is damaged in an accident that you caused. Because you are at fault, neither your liability coverage nor anyone else's will pay for the cost of fixing your vehicle. If you don't want these costs to come out of your own pocket, you will want to purchase this insurance.

The second kind of property damage coverage is called comprehensive insurance. This is coverage that will pay to fix your vehicle if it is damaged in some way that does not involve another vehicle or accident, and will pay to replace it if it is stolen. Generally, comprehensive coverage covers damage to your vehicle from someone else's malicious intent, like vandalism or theft, and also some acts of God, like damage due to rain or snow. Some acts of God are not covered, though, so you will want to check your individual policy for details.

The above are all the major types of auto insurance coverage offered in Maryland. Individual insurance companies may offer more coverage. If you are interested in knowing more, be sure to contact the individual company you would like to work with. Otherwise, you are in a good position to choose the coverage that you need, want, and can afford.


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