Thursday, December 27, 2007

Driving Someone Else's Car - Personal Injury Protection.

By Amy Nutt

No one wants to get into a car accident. Car accidents are an unfortunate and all-too-common byproduct of our auto-centric society. Sadly, the take thousands of lives and cost us billions of dollars every year in repairs, medical bills, insurance payments, lost wages and funeral costs.

Every car owner in America should have car insurance. Laws differ by state, but every state in the union requires automobile owners to have some form of car insurance. The minimal amount of car insurance required by law is liability insurance, which covers cost incurred for the other driver when you are involved in an accident and it's your fault.

No one will ever accuse the insurance industry of being simple. As many people have experienced, making an insurance claim is often a boondoggle of red tape and bureaucratic frustration, especially if you are unfamiliar with the system.

This article will address the issue of personal injury protection when you are driving someone else's vehicle.

If you are investigating this issue, beware that laws and procedures involving car insurance differ state by state. Be sure and educate yourself to the best of your ability about the laws in your state.

Personal injury protection coverage is sold in increments of $2,500. The base amount available for purchase is usually $2,500, but it can increase to higher amounts such as $5,000 or $10,000 depending on your state and insurance carrier. Personal Injury Protection (or PIP) covers you and any immediate family member riding in your insured vehicle or any other vehicle in which you or your family member might be riding. However, this coverage does not cover you or your family members if you are driving another person's car without permission. That fact is crucial. If you or any member of your immediate family choose to drive another person's car, be absolutely sure you do so with full permission.

Conversely, if you loan your car to anyone, your Personal Injury Protection extends to that person. That is good news for anyone without automobile insurance who borrows a car from someone who does have insurance.

It is highly recommended that every car owner in America have Personal Injury Protection. In a tragic situation, it can save you or your family members a huge amount of financial and emotional strain. One of the most helpful features of Personal Injury Protection is that it will play 100 percent of your necessary medical or funeral bills as well as providing 80 percent of your lost wages and reasonable expenses related to the accident -such as household help. If you collect this money and then collect damages from the person who negligently caused your injuries, you do not have to return the money your insurance company paid you, which is another major benefit of Personal Injury Protection.

As you enroll in an auto insurance, you might be tempted to cut corners and spend less money on your monthly bill. At first, this might seem like a good idea, especially if you are a safe driver with a good driving record. But even the best drivers can make mistakes and get into accidents. You and your family's health and well-being are far too precious to squander over a smaller monthly insurance bill. I highly encourage you to investigate Personal Injury Protection and include it in your car insurance plan. It may not seem important, but when you need it you will be very glad you have it.

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