Everyone who owns an automobile in the state of Kansas, which is titled and in condition to be driven on the road, must maintain a basic policy of automobile insurance that includes minimal policy limits. Every car that is on the roadway, therefore, is required to have basic insurance coverage that at a minimum provides $25,000 in coverage for a person in the event that he or she causes an accident and is sued by the other driver if a claim is made against that individual for negligence. The insurance company will provide $25,000 of coverage for that claim at a minimum and $50,000 per accident if there are multiple claims which is also a minimum required under Kansas law. Additionally there is the requirement that a vehicle owner have a minimum of property damage coverage of up to $10,000.
Furthermore, vehicle owners are required to carry a minimum no fault coverage policy which provides, amongst other things, $4,500 of coverage for medical bills regardless of who was at fault for the accident. The minimum coverage includes $900 per month in lost wages or 80% of the person’s wages, whichever figure is smaller.
Most people only cover themselves with the minimum auto insurance policy limits. However, everyone should have as much protection as possible. It is critical to protect one’s financial situation in the event you are at fault in an accident and a lawsuit is filed where damages are in excess of the current insurance policy held.
If an individual doesn’t own property, it may not be necessary to have more than the minimal policy coverage. However, if someone does have assets, it is a good idea to purchase as much coverage as possible. The slight difference in premiums for a $25,000 policy versus $100,000 policy is so minimal, that it is literally pennies a day more to have the higher liability limit. It is really in everyone’s best interest to have as much coverage as one can afford on both the liability limit and the no fault insurance coverage that pays for medical bills regardless of who is at fault. Medical care is so expensive nowadays and if someone just has the minimal policy of insurance it is not going to go very far. Many accident victims that end up in the emergency room end up expending that $4,500 that day.
Most people are generally surprised at the amount of coverage they actually do have. For one thing, they don’t understand how auto insurance really works because their insurance agent didn’t explain it thoroughly. Secondly, people are surprised because they don’t understand how inexpensive it is to get additional coverage that could have afforded them a more complete recovery in the accident.
When most people buy automobile insurance, they only buy it because they’re required by law to do so. They don’t buy it because driving is one of the most dangerous activities that a person can do in his or her life. If more people realized how dangerous driving is compared to any of their other activities of daily living, then they wouldn’t get a shock at the time of their accident claim about their insurance coverage. They would have purchased coverage to begin with to provide a bigger or greater safety net in the event of an accident.
In Kansas many people will try to, and in fact can get away with, not insuring their vehicle, or only buying minimal policy limits. On the first point of those not buying insurance, there is really no system in the state of Kansas to ensure everyone driving a vehicle is fully covered or is even insured at all. The only way that that usually comes up is when an officer pulls someone over for a traffic citation and asks whether or not they have insurance coverage, which they can do that by law. The other common way it comes to light is if someone without insurance is involved in an auto accident.
Otherwise if a person is driving safely within the law and has not been involved in an accident, many people throughout the state of Kansas will go without insurance coverage thinking that it’s just too big of an expense for their lifestyle and they’re willing to take the risk. With respect to those that are underinsured, what we are really talking about are situations where a person is involved in an accident with someone who only has minimal policy limits. The victim of that accident is the underinsured driver who didn’t buy much coverage under his or her own policy and the other driver’s insurance policy is only a minimal policy limit.
Because the individual is underinsured, essentially he or she is victimized twice. He or she was first victimized by the agent for not having sold them the proper insurance coverage. Second, he or she is then victimized by the person who caused the accident, but only has minimal policies of insurance and most likely doesn’t have any independent wealth that the individual can pursue. The accident victim is left out in the cold not being able to make a complete recovery for the damages they sustained in the accident.