Over 2 million people were injured in passenger vehicle accidents in 2014, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Because traffic accident injuries can range from minor to serious, it’s important to carry enough insurance coverage for any situation, as well as what’s required by law. Rhode Island is a fault state, and there are certain minimum coverages every driver must have.
The Minimum Coverage Requirements in Rhode Island
When designating blame and financial responsibility after a car accident, Rhode Island operates under a fault-based system—meaning that the at-fault driver is liable for damages he caused in the accident. For this reason, the at-fault driver’s insurance company is responsible for covering the costs of injuries and damages of all parties involved, including:
- Medical costs
- Property damages
- Lost wages
The state of Rhode Island requires that you purchase insurance that allows for the following minimum coverage for an accident:
- $25,000 for the injury or death of one person—you, a passenger, another driver, or a pedestrian
- $50,000 for the injury or death of more than one person in a single incident
- $25,000 for property damages
Medical bills can pile up quickly, and repairing or replacing a vehicle is expensive. When you’re financially able, it may be wise to buy the most coverage available to you.
Diversify Your Insurance Coverages
Purchasing adequate insurance is important to protecting you, your family, and those on the road before a car accident happens. Besides liability coverages such as property damage and bodily injury insurance, you may want to consider purchasing:
Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage.
Rhode Island requires that every auto insurance policy offers UM coverage. If a driver wants to waive UM coverage, she must do so in writing. However, in the event you are hit by someone with too little insurance, a driver with no insurance, or a hit-and-run driver, UM coverage means your insurance company will cover your property damages and bodily injuries despite the other driver’s lack of insurance.
If your vehicle is damaged in a non-collision event—such as theft, fire, fallen tree limbs, vandalism, or a run-in with a large animal—comprehensive insurance will cover the costs of the damage after you pay your deductible.
If you are involved in a single-vehicle accident with a light pole, a parked vehicle, or a house, for example, collision coverage pays for the repairs to your vehicle after your deductible.