Supplemental Spousal Liability
Supplemental spousal liability is a supplementary coverage in an auto insurance policy that allows one spouse to sue the driver's spouse in the event of an accident. The suing spouse is not entitled to any insurance coverage in the absence of this feature in the insurance policy. Spousal car insurance is a fairly recent phenomenon due to its potential of causing legal inter-spousal clashes within the family. It is therefore not a legal requirement but an optional addition to an insurance policy.
For clarity, let us assume David was at the wheel and his wife Diana was in the passenger seat. David ignored the red light and was involved in a collision a few feet away. Under the Supplemental Spousal liability, Diana can sue David for the injuries caused to her due to his driving. The couple's auto insurance policy will have Diana covered and will allow David to make a claim from it. In the absence of the spousal car insurance option, Diana would not be liable to make a claim/suit for her injuries and suffering and David would not be able to recover from the policy.
During the purchase of your policy or at the time of renewal, the insurance company will offer you an option of Supplemental Spousal Liability coverage along with a detailed explanation of it. They will also brief you about the additional premium that needs to be paid for availing the option. This feature of spousal car insurance is inexpensive and is therefore offered as an additional coverage on most auto insurance policies by insurance companies. The supplementary spousal coverage is an opt-in addition. It is not added to your policy unless you specifically ask for it and willing to pay for it.
Supplemental Spousal liability coverage simply allows an individual policy holder or his/her spouse to recover monetary damages for injury as any regular injured person is entitled to. Therefore under this option, the injured spouse still has to prove negligence on part of the insured spouse at the wheel during the accident. It is important to note that the supplementary liability coverage does not include an increase in the liability limit, but merely adds another individual to the policy.
When you purchase auto insurance directly from the insurance firm, the salesperson is merely there to sell the policy to you and is not required to offer you any advice according to specific requirements and circumstances. Many policy buyers therefore believe that it is important to consult an independent insurance agent before making any insurance purchase-related decisions. He/she is a professional insurance advisor who will be able to equip with expert, professional and unbiased information to make the right decision.