According to the Georgia Department of Driver Services, all drivers in the state of Georgia must have accident liability insurance for all the vehicles that they own. Drivers must carry proof of this insurance. The minimum amount of coverage you must have is $25, 000 per person for bodily injury, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury to two or more people, and $25,000 per accident for property damage. Driving without insurance or letting your insurance lapse can lead to high fines and even having your driver’s license suspended.
Auto insurance is sometimes referred to as “liability” insurance. However, liability insurance will only cover the people or property you cause damage to. It does NOT cover yourself, your vehicle, your passengers, or your policy holders. Many drivers purchase more than the mandatory $25,000 minimum because Georgia’s legal system holds the driver and his insurance company, if found to be “at fault” in an accident, responsible for ALL damages that result from the accident. This extra insurance adds peace of mind and may save you a lot of money down the road.
It is a very smart idea to get further coverage if you can afford it, but the State of Georgia does not require you do so. Most people also purchase Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UM/UIM). This extra insurance pays for damages to yourself, your passengers and your vehicle if the other driver is at fault but does not have insurance, or if he has the minimum amount of coverage allowed but it is not enough to cover your damages.
The state also recommends that you get Personal Injury Protection coverage (PIP). This covers most medical, hospital, and funeral expenses for yourself, your passengers, and pedestrians that you may have hit. It pays for a certain amount of damages (usually $10,000) for each person in your vehicle for any accident, regardless of fault.
Georgia allows insurance companies to exclude drivers from your insurance policies for a number of reasons. These include:
- a number vehicle citations
- multiple at fault accidents
- a suspended driver’s license
- a DWI/DUI conviction, and
- impaired mental capacity
Your coverage will be considered invalid, if you allow a specifically excluded driver to operate one of your vehicles.
The state of Georgia does allow two alternative forms of insurance. You can obtain “Self Insurance” by providing a certified deposit that is equal to or greater than the state’s minimum per vehicle insurance limit of $100,000. Proof of the certified deposit must be taken to the Georgia Office of Insurance and Fire Safety. They will then provide you with a self insurance card.
You may also obtain a DMV Insurance Bond. You purchase the minimum amount of insurance, $100,000 from the DMV in the form of a bond. The state prefers this type of alternate insurance because it assures that the funds are there if they are needed. The Georgia Office of Insurance and Fire Safety will provide you with a self-insurance card for proof of insurance.
If you have any questions concerning auto insurance is the state of Georgia, please contact The Kerr Law Firm at 843-785-3330. You can also contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to assist you with a free consultation regarding your insurance needs in the State of Georgia.