In Kent County, Delaware, there are about 4,000 auto accidents each year. Of those, about 1,000, or 1/3, result in injuries. As Dover car accident lawyers, we see that the most common car accident injuries are:
- back/spinal injuries,
- head injuries, and
- fractured bones.
When serious injuries like these occur, an injured victim may be able to obtain financial compensation, so long as another party caused the accident. In addition, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits may be available to individuals who are injured in car accidents in Delaware, regardless of fault. PIP claims may be made for specific financial losses such as medical bills, lost wages and other expenses like household help or funeral costs. Click the link for an explanation of Delaware PIP law.
Contact Our Dover, DE Car Accident Lawyers for a FREE CONSULTATION
How Bodily Injury Liability Coverage Works in Delaware Car Accident Cases
Many Delaware residents who are injured in car accidents don’t know that financial compensation often comes from the at-fault driver’s car insurance company via a type of coverage known as bodily injury liability coverage.
Bodily injury liability coverage covers the insured party when they cause a car accident that results in injuries to another driver, passenger, pedestrian or bicyclist. For example, a Dover resident is injured in a car accident caused by a fellow Dover resident. The injured party could make a bodily injury liability claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company and recover up to the amount of coverage purchased.
Every car insurance policy issued in Delaware must provide a minimum amount of bodily injury liability coverage, currently $15,000/$30,000. See below for a discussion of new coverage amounts that take effect this month. The first amount, $15,000, applies per person. In other words, for a minimum limits policy, a single person can recover a total of $15,000. The second amount, $30,000, applies per accident and is the maximum coverage available per accident. If three people are injured in the same accident, the maximum amount available to all three totals $30,000.
While many Delaware residents purchase minimum coverage car insurance policies, many purchase higher coverage limits, such as $100,000, $300,000 or more. Commercial car insurance policies which cover delivery trucks and other large trucks often provide much higher bodily injury liability coverage, such as $1,000,000.
December 13, 2017 – New Coverage Limits Take Effect
The minimum amount required under Delaware law recently changed. Over the summer, the Delaware legislature passed an amendment to car insurance law, increasing the minimum bodily injury liability coverage amount to $25,000/$50,000.
The amendment takes effect on December 13, 2017, but only for new policies written after that date. For any existing Delaware car insurance policies, the new coverage amount takes effect upon renewal.
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage Limits & Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Underinsured and uninsured motorist (UIM/UM) coverage is an often misunderstood type of car accident coverage. Bodily injury liability coverage protects an insured from their own negligent conduct (i.e., they get sued for causing a car accident). UIM/UM coverage protects an insured when they get into a car accident with another driver who is either underinsured (didn’t have enough coverage) or uninsured (didn’t have coverage at all).
The important thing to note about UIM/UM coverage in Delaware is that the coverage amount is usually the same as the bodily injury liability coverage amount. For instance, a Dover resident who has a minimum limits policy (taking effect after December 13, 2017), has $25,000 of bodily injury liability coverage, as well as $25,000 of UIM/UM coverage.
In our experience as car accident lawyers in Delaware, UIM/UM coverage is one of the most important types of coverage. It is, however, optional, and many Dover residents opt out in exchange for a better premium.
Wilmington & Dover Car Accident Law Firm – FREE CONSULTATIONS
Our injury lawyers handle car, truck and pedestrian accidents throughout Delaware. If you need assistance with an auto accident insurance claim for PIP benefits or injuries, please contact us for a free consultation. The firm has offices in Wilmington, Dover and Newark. (302) 658-1717 (Wilmington); (302) 735-5500 (Dover)
*Disclaimer: This website page does not provide any legal advice or create any attorney-client relationship. Every case is unique and you should not take any action or make decisions in your case without speaking to a qualified car and truck accident lawyer in Delaware. Any discussion of results is no guarantee of the same or similar results in current or future cases.
*Use of the contact form on this website or emailing one of our lawyers does not create any attorney-client relationship. In addition, confidential information should not be sent through the contact form.