How Much Car Insurance Does a Florida Driver Need to Carry?

There is a big difference between how much car insurance Florida drivers are required to carry, and how much they really need to have to truly protect themselves and their families.

Let us first consider how much a Florida driver is legally required to carry. The answer is “very little.”

To own and maintain a Florida license plate and registration, a Florida motorist is required to purchase a minimum of

  • $10,000 personal injury protection (PIP) aka “Florida No Fault Insurance.”
  • $10,000 property damage liability (PDL).

PIP pays 80% of your medical bills, and up to 60% of lost wages, up to the limit of your policy. Since the minimum requirement is $10,000, that is the amount most drivers carry.

Obviously, $10,000 of PIP is woefully insufficient to cover you, your family and others in most types of serious accidents. And, unless a driver has committed a DUI offense in the recent past, liability insurance is not a requirement in Florida.

For this reason, optional coverage is available for Florida drivers to purchase.

Speak with an experienced Florida attorney at our firm today.
Call 855-Kramer-Now (855-572-6376)

How much and what kind of optional car insurance should you have?

The question of how much car insurance to buy is difficult to answer because it becomes a personal decision, often based on each individual’s or family’s finances. Plus, Florida’s car insurance laws and requirements are confusing at best.

The following explanation is provided to demystify your insurance options, and to help you understand why certain types of insurance create the best way to protect yourself and others.

Types of car insurance Florida drivers may voluntarily purchase – in addition to the required minimum.

Bodily Injury Liability Insurance

Bodily injury (BI) liability insurance pays money damages if you cause an accident and injure someone else. You purchase BI to help to protect your assets. Without BI coverage, your personal assets may be at risk.

If you are partially or totally responsible for a car accident in which someone sustains serious injury, the injured person(s) can sue you for damages. By owning BI liability coverage, your policy would serve to reimburse the injured party up to the policy limits. BI coverage also pays towards the cost of your defense in these cases.

Minimum bodily injury coverage can be $10,000 per person/$20,000 per accident. Recommended coverage is generally higher, and can range from $15,000/$30,000 to $250,000/$500,000 or more.

As explained below, you must have bodily injury coverage in order to be eligible to purchase Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage.

Uninsured Motorist / Underinsured Motorist (UM) Insurance

UM insurance coverage pays for your damages if you are in an accident and the negligent driver either has no bodily injury liability insurance (Uninsured Motorist) or does not have enough BI to reimburse your losses (Underinsured Motorist).

Once your PIP coverage is used up and it is determined the at-fault driver has little or no liability insurance to pursue, your UM coverage kicks in. UM pays for medical bills, lost wages, and (very importantly) pain and suffering.

Florida law requires insurance companies who sell bodily injury (BI) liability policies to offer an equal amount of uninsured motorist (UM) coverage on each policy.

Like BI, UM is not mandatory. But you must specifically reject (in writing) that offer of UM coverage. You can also specifically choose to buy lesser coverage. You are entitled to UM up to the limit of the bodily injury liability coverage you elect in your policy.

Stacked UM

When you own more than one car, you can purchase stacked UM insurance—you get to add one UM policy on top of another, and the policy limits are added together.

If you have two cars and a truck, with $100,000 of UM coverage on each vehicle, the stacked coverage for you and your family amounts to $300,000.

Stacked coverage generally applies to “Class I” insureds: the named insured, spouse, and resident relatives. Stacked UM coverage follows the insured, so whether you or a family member are injured as a pedestrian, a passenger in another car, or you are driving someone else's car, your UM policy covers you.

Unless you reject the UM coverage in writing, stacking of UM coverage is presumed.

Non-stacked UM

If you have non-stacked UM, you may only recover damages if you are in a wreck while in the insured automobile.

See more about stacking vs. non-stacking Florida UM.

Extended PIP

In the case of serious injuries, standard PIP coverage does not go far. It is worth considering increasing PIP coverage to $50,000 or $100,000 in the event your medical bills and lost wages are in excess of $10,000.

Medical Payment Insurance

Florida drivers may also elect to buy Medical Payments Coverage (Med Pay) to supplement PIP coverage. This can be especially beneficial for people who do not have health insurance. PIP covers 80% of your medical bills, and Med Pay can cover the remaining 20%.

Most insurance policies offer Med Pay in the amount of $5000. Med Pay does not cover lost wages.

Speak with an experienced Florida attorney at our firm today.
Call 855-Kramer-Now (855-572-6376)

Are you adequately insured?

As attorneys who represent car accident injury victims, we often see families suffer because they carried only the minimum coverage. Because they met Florida’s minimum requirements, they believed they were adequately protected.

Do you know how much car insurance you have? If you are unsure of your automobile coverage, now is the perfect time to examine and understand what insurance policies you have. Go through them with your insurance agent. Do you feel comfortable that you are fully covered? Is it time to make a change?

A good rule of thumb is, play it safe and carry as much insurance as you reasonably can. It is beneficial to opt for stackable UM coverage if you are financially able to.

Getting a fair sum in an Orlando auto accident claim.

As Florida personal injury attorneys, we have helped hundreds of accident victims recover full and fair compensation for injuries sustained in car crashes through negotiations with insurance companies, litigation or trial.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of an accident and would like Kramer Law to review your case, please contact us.

Altamonte Springs Office
999 Douglas Avenue
Suite 3333
Altamonte Springs, FL 32714
Downtown Orlando Office
37 N. Orange Avenue
Suite 500b
Orlando, FL 32801
CALL (407) 834-4847