Regardless of whether you have a short commute from Troy to Sterling Heights, MI or are driving from downtown to up north, any time you set out on the road it can be dangerous. Having the right coverage on your leased, financed or free and clear vehicle can make all the difference when disaster strikes.
Navigating your Michigan no-fault auto insurance policy can be confusing, our team of highly trained, licensed insurance professionals, here at Envision Insurance (located in Sterling Heights, MI) are ready to help with determining what auto insurance coverage is most appropriate for your vehicle. Outlined below, however, is a brief explanation of Michigan no-fault auto insurance.
Typically, a Michigan auto insurance policy will include the following coverages:
- Bodily Injury
- Underinsured Motorist
- Uninsured Motorist
- Limited Property Damage
- Property Protection Insurance (PPI)
- Collision Coverage
- Broad Form
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
- Roadside Assistance
- Rental Coverage / Reimbursement
Bodily injury is coverage provided to you, the policyholder, if you, a family member or a person you allowed to drive your vehicle is found to be at-fault in an accident that consequently caused the pain and suffering of a not-at-fault party. Granted you, the registered owner of the vehicle, can be held responsible (liable), it is possible that you find yourself being a defendant in a lawsuit. Bodily injury coverage will protect your assets and cover the lawsuit up to the amount outlined in your policy.
Two popular types of bodily injury coverage are: split limit and combined single limit. Split limit allocates coverage on a per person / per occurrence basis and combined single limit allocates coverage only on a per occurrence basis.
If a competent court is to adjudicate in favor of the not-at-fault party for a lawsuit settlement amount that is greater than the coverage outlined in your policy, then you will be held responsible to pay for the excess amount that your policy does not cover. Should you not have enough cash on hand to pay the settlement amount in its entirety, the court may rule that you liquidate assets to pay the not-at-fault party in full. Such liquidation may include selling your home (to collect the equity you maintain in it), your vehicles or other assets to be able to pay the settlement in full. Therefore, considering an umbrella policy (excess liability coverage) in addition to having adequate bodily injury liability limits is imperative.
Underinsured motorist is coverage provided to you, the policyholder, if you, a family member or a person you allowed to drive your vehicle is found to be the not-at-fault party in an accident that consequently caused pain and suffering, and the at-fault party has an inadequate amount of bodily injury coverage. Of course, you could sue the at-fault party for the excess amount, however, if they were unemployed and did not have any significant assets then you would find it hard-pressed to be able to collect anything from them granted a competent court would not be able to rule in favor of garnishment of wages / liquidating assets. Underinsured motorist, like bodily injury, has split limits and combined single limits.
Uninsured motorist is coverage that is similar to underinsured motorist, in that, should you, the policyholder, a family member or a person you allowed to drive your vehicle be found to be the not-at-fault party in an accident that consequently caused pain and suffering and the at-fault party did not have an active auto insurance policy in place at the time of the accident, you would be able to settle with your own insurance carrier to cover pain and suffering settlement. Uninsured motorist, like bodily injury and underinsured motorist, has split limits and combined single limits.
Limited property damage coverage covers you by paying up to $1,000 of the standard collision deductible of the not-at-fault party should you be found at-fault. If the not-at-fault party has PLPD coverage, limited property damage will cover up to $1,000 of damage (typically an estimate is required to prove the amount of damage). If the not-at-fault party has broad form collision coverage, they cannot pursue you granted they do not have a deductible since they are deemed not-at-fault, and thus, limited property damage coverage would be unnecessary. Should the not-at-fault party have limited collision coverage they would typically not have a deductible, thus limited property damage coverage would also be unnecessary.
Property protection insurance (PPI) is a standard and mandatory coverage that is included in every Michigan auto insurance policy. PPI covers you, the policyholder, your family or a person you allowed to drive your vehicle if they are involved in an auto accident that resulted in the damage of others’ static property, that is, property such as: a parked vehicle, building, house, fencing, street light, center median, etc. This coverage provides up to $1,000,000 to cover the damages of the not-at-fault party’s static property.
Comprehensive coverage covers physical damage to your vehicle that was caused from a covered peril that does not involve an accident with another vehicle / static property (as those things would be covered by collision coverage / PPI, respectively). Such things would include if your vehicle were damaged by falling objects, floods, hitting an animal (such as a deer), vandalism, broken windows / windshields, etc. Comprehensive coverage also typically provides coverage for theft – if your vehicle were to be stolen.
Collision coverage provides coverage for damage to your vehicle as a result of a car accident. There are three types of collision coverage: limited, standard and broad form. Limited collision coverage provides collision coverage only if you are deemed to be the not-at-fault party, if you are the at-fault party no collision coverage is awarded. Typically, if you elect limited collision coverage you will have a $0 deductible. Limited collision coverage is uncommon and is usually elected for older vehicles that have a low blue book value. Standard collision coverage provides coverage for damage to your vehicle regardless of who is at-fault, it includes deductibles ranging from $0 – $2,500 that must be paid out regardless of fault. Broad form coverage provides coverage for damage to your vehicle regardless of who is at fault, however, if you are not-at-fault the deductible is waived. Broad form deductibles typically range from $100 – $2,500, and again, only apply if you are found to be at-fault.
Personal injury protection (PIP) provides unlimited coverage for medical expenses if you are injured in a car accident, regardless of who is at fault or if you are a pedestrian and are hit by a vehicle. Most policies include a PIP deductible, which is the portion of the medical bills you are responsible for, these typically range from $0 – $10,000.
Roadside assistance provides coverage (or reimbursement) for towing and roadside expenses for covered vehicles that are inoperable / disabled, such as: if you were to need a tow to a collision shop or mechanic, run out of gas while traveling, had a flat tire and needed the installation of a spare, etc.
Rental coverage / reimbursement covers the cost of a rental vehicle should you need one as a result of a covered peril as defined by your auto insurance policy.
Please note that this article is not comprehensive and determining what coverage is right for your unique situation should be left to the experts, call us today with your questions on which coverage is most appropriate for you and ask us for a free quote!