The Sunshine State is one of only twelve states in the country that operates under a no-fault auto insurance system. This concept tends to be confusing, and it's important to understand what it does and doesn't cover when you start shopping for Palm Bay insurance quotes.
How Palm Bay Insurance Differs
Unlike a tort system, which most states follow, Florida does not assign fault in an auto accident. Rather than battling out who hit who first or who was at fault, the claims process tends to move along faster because each party's insurance covers their loss.
Other key differences in a no-fault system include:
- Less litigation. No-fault insurance means that neither party can sue the other for damages incurred. This keeps claims like pain and suffering and medical bills out of court and keeps insurance costs lower. An exception to this includes significant or permanent injury, like paralysis, or death.
- You must carry PIP. PIP coverage, or Personal Injury Protection, is designed to cover your medical bills in an accident and keep you from suing the other party for medical bills. However, if you weren't at fault and your bills exhaust your PIP, in some cases you can sue the other driver. In Florida, you are required to have $10,000 in PIP.
Even though Florida is a no-fault state, you still must carry liability insurance to cover damage you cause. Florida also has some of the lowest liability requirements in the nation--just $10,000/$20,000 for bodily injury and $10,000 for property damage. These amounts won't get you far, so it's wise when shopping for Palm Bay insurance quotes to increase your coverage to the recommended amounts:
- Bodily Injury: $100,000/$300,000
- Property Damage: $50,000
- Uninsured/Underinsured: $10,000/$20,000. This covers your damages in the event the other driver is uninsured or does not have sufficient insurance.
Lowering Your Palm Bay Insurance
Florida auto insurance consistently ranks in the top most expensive states to insure a car, so many people look for ways to save. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to keep your Palm Bay insurance quotes under control, including:
- Discounts. There are many discounts for car insurance, including safe driver, customer loyalty, military, and multiple policy discounts.
- Raise your deductible. An easy way to lower your payments is to raise your deductible to a higher amount you can still afford out of pocket.
- Avoid tickets. Your insurance will go up 25% or more and stay up for three years with just one ticket. Avoid tickets at all costs. If you do get one, you can go to a DMV-approved traffic course and it will be erased from your record upon completion of the course.
- Shop around. You can also save by shopping around for multiple Palm Bay insurance quotes and then comparing them for the best price. Netquote.com is the fastest, easiest way to get multiple quotes and valuable insurance information for free.
Shopping for Palm Bay insurance can be confusing, but knowing how a no-fault system works can help you find the insurance you need without having to break the bank.