California requires at-fault drivers to pay for the damages and injuries they cause in an accident. The law also requires drivers to have auto insurance with the following minimum liability limits: (1) $15,000 for one injured person; (2) $30,000 total per accident if more than one person is injured; and (3) $5,000 for property damage. If the at-fault driver only has the minimum insurance coverage, injured victims must use other policies for coverage for damages exceeding these limits.
Despite these minimum coverage requirements, some drivers fail to have auto insurance at the time of the accident. However, injured victims may find relief from their own auto insurance policy’s uninsured motorist coverage. This uninsured motorist coverage also applies when the at-fault driver only has the minimum insurance coverage and your losses exceed that policy’s limits. In this scenario, your policy’s underinsurance coverage may cover these additional losses if the underinsurance provision of your policy is greater than the at-fault driver’s policy. For example, if the at-fault driver’s insurance is only $15,000 and your insurance underinsurance provision is $30,000, you may be able to collect the difference between the two limits, or $15,000.
Your auto insurance may also be a source of compensation for your damages and injuries. Many insurance policies have medical payments coverage, which pays for medical expenses up to a specific limit.
If your medical expenses are greater than the coverage provided by the above sources, your own health insurance may be used to cover these expenses. Your health insurance generally covers your medical expenses, subject to the specific terms of your policy, such as deductibles and copays. Many injured victims rely on their health insurance for coverage of these expenses while their personal injury claim or lawsuit is pending.
Your homeowner’s insurance may also provide coverage for your losses. Some homeowner insurance policies cover bicycle theft and damage caused by third parties, and may also cover personal injury. Your experienced bicycle accident attorney will analyze your policy to determine the extent of coverage of your losses.
Based on the risks of bicycling along with the needs of cyclists, more insurance companies are offering policies for bicycling. These policies often cover theft, property damage, and bodily injury.