December 23, 2010

How Insurance Companies Deal With Accidents Involving Pedestrians

In pedestrian accidents, the medical costs of the pedestrian are typically attributed to the at-fault driver, unless the pedestrian was breaking the law by jaywalking or when certain other factors are involved. Many drivers wonder how their auto insurance quotes will change after pedestrian accidents, and more importantly, whether their auto insurance will pay for a pedestrian accident that has recently occurred. One of the most important features of a good car insurance policy is the financial protection that it can offer to policy holders - both in situations in which they're at fault in pedestrian accidents and in situations in which they aren't at fault.

Drivers are required by law to carry medical liability coverage, which pays for the medical bills incurred by both pedestrians and other drivers in an at-fault accident. Your medical liability coverage is a particularly important part of your car insurance policy, because you're liable for these medical bills. If you can't pay them, you can have your wages garnished, and medical bills can be extremely expensive, especially in pedestrian accidents. It's one part of your auto insurance policy that you should be very careful not to skimp on. Check that your liability coverage is high, especially when looking at auto insurance quotes, and also check to make sure that the deductibles for this part of your policy are affordable. High deductibles can reduce the cost of coverage, but they can also make an accident very expensive for a driver.

What if you're the pedestrian? Many drivers aren't aware that their insurance policies will actually protect them if they're the pedestrians–that is, if you have a car insurance policy with personal injury protection (PIP coverage) and you're hit by a vehicle as a pedestrian, your personal injury protection will actually kick in and pay for some of your medical bills. Again, this is limited by your deductible. If you have both medical insurance and personal injury protection coverage, your medical insurance will pay for bills first, and any amount that isn't covered under your medical insurance will be paid by your personal injury protection. However, deductibles will be due on both policies.

Understanding the different functions of your auto insurance policy can be very helpful and can help you to plan for accidents. Many drivers never anticipate being involved in a pedestrian accident, but with the right insurance policy you'll be protected whether you're the at-fault driver or the pedestrian. Be sure to know how your insurance types work and you'll be able to buy insurance much more confidently while keeping your financial health protected in an accident.