Personal liability and property damage or “PLPD” insurance is coverage that you buy to cover the costs of a car accident in which you are deemed legally at fault. PLPD insurance covers the costs incurred by the other driver, not by you personally. If you are at fault in a car accident, your losses will be covered by your “Med Pay” (also known as personal injury protection or “PIP”) and collision policies – provided that you chose to purchase them. If the other driver is at fault, then your losses would be covered by his or her PLPD policy.
Unlike Med Pay and collision coverage, PLPD coverage is mandatory under California law. As the owner or operator of a vehicle registered in California, you are required to have the following PLPD coverage:
- Personal liability coverage of $15,000 per person/$30,000 per accident; and,
- Property damage coverage of $5,000 per accident.
Importantly, these are the minimum requirements in California. You have the option to purchase additional PLPD coverage, and doing so can help you avoid personal liability in the event that you cause an accident resulting in severe traumatic injuries.
The costs of obtaining medical treatment for, recovering from, and coping with a serious injury can far exceed $15,000; and, if you are underinsured, then the injured party could sue you personally for the difference between your policy limit the total of his or her financial and non-financial losses. The amount of PLPD coverage you buy should be a function of the total value of your assets and the amount of additional monthly premiums you can afford to pay, but for most people personal liability coverage limits of $250,000 per person and $500,000 per accident are a good idea.
What Should I Do If I Have a PLPD Insurance Claim?
If you were injured in a car accident that was someone else’s fault, recovering your losses will most likely involve filing a claim under the other driver’s PLPD policy. PLPD provides fault-based compensation, so you will need to be able to prove that: (i) the other driver caused (or at least contributed to causing) the accident; and, (ii) you have suffered losses that are compensable under California law. Some of the most-common causes of car accidents include:
- Alcohol and drug-impaired driving
- Distracted driving (i.e. talking, texting, navigating, or eating behind the wheel)
- Drowsy driving
- Failure to yield
- Following too closely
- Lane change and merging errors
- Running red lights and stop signs
Losses that can be recovered in a PLPD insurance claim include:
- Vehicle repair or replacement costs
- Medical bills
- Prescription costs
- Loss of income
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Other financial and non-financial losses
While you can file a PLPD insurance claim on your own, it is highly advisable to hire an experienced personal injury attorney to handle your claim for you. Proving fault in a car accident is complicated, and the other driver’s insurance company will vigorously dispute your allegations of liability. An experienced attorney will also be able to help you accurately calculate your losses, including medical expenses and other costs you are likely to incur in the future. If you settle too soon, your case will be over, and you will have lost your ability to recover just compensation for your accident-related losses.
Speak with a Glendale Personal Injury Attorney for Free
Our attorneys represent car accident victims throughout Southern California in PLPD insurance claims. If you were injured in an accident that was fully or partially someone else’s fault, we can help you recover just compensation. To discuss your case in a free and confidential consultation, call us at 866-645-1680 or tell us how to reach you online today.
META: Injured in a car accident? You may have a PLPD insurance claim. Learn more from Glendale personal injury attorney Alex Megeredchian. Call 866-645-1680 today.