Maintaining Insurance Coverage in CT
Maintaining insurance in CT on your automobile is required by law.
See Connecticut General Statutes Section 14-213B. The CT state minimum requirements have increased to 25per person/50per accident. This means in an accident, the total amount available to collect is $50,000.00, with a maximum of $25,000.00 per person. For example, in a car accident where 4 people are injured, the total pot available is $50K, with $25K as the maximum any one person can collect.
Failure to maintain insurance can carry severe consequences, including, but not limited to criminal penalties, civil fines, as well as having your car impounded or repossessed.
The bottom line is it is the LAW! However, unfortunate as it is, not everyone follows the law. You cannot rely on other people to do what is right and follow the law. That is why it is important for you to maintain insurance on your vehicle. The impacts of not having insurance can be devastating if you or a loved one are involved in an accident and there is no insurance available to compensate you for your harms and losses.
People often have concerns that their insurance rates will go up if they bring a claim against their own insurance company. However, the impact, if any, on your rates increasing are generally outweighed by the benefit of having coverage available if and when you are injured. Plus, this is what you pay premiums year after year for. If you did a cost-benefits analysis, I just about guarantee that the amount of premiums you have paid into your policy (particularly for policies held 5+ years) far exceed any increase in premium you might see. Plus, most companies have “accident forgiveness” or some other form of vanishing deductible or refund on premiums the longer you go without an accident.
You could also be benefitting a member of your household by maintaining insurance. This is because of a term known as resident relative, where members of a household can take advantage of a policy in your name while residing in your home. We recently handled a case on behalf of a minor child who was able to collect on her parent’s auto insurance because she resided with them. The driver who struck her was not insured, so she would have been without any recovery had her parents not maintained their own auto insurance.
You should speak with an auto agent right away to determine the coverage that is best for you. Insurance coverage can be a complex area that is not a “one-size-fits-all” matter. There are also a lot of intricacies involved – ie. Having medical coverage on your policy; electing conversion where your coverages are doubled; or purchasing an umbrella policy.
Some things to keep in mind when purchasing insurance:
- Maintain at least the state minimum limits (25/50) or higher if you own assets (home, boat, valuable assets), etc. and make sure you make your premium payments to avoid cancellation.
- Make sure your license and registration are up to date! Failure to have a valid license or properly register your vehicle can lead to problems in obtaining insurance.
- Make sure everyone listed in your household who may (or may not) drive is listed on your policy.
- Always keep a copy of your insurance card in your vehicle. After your license and registration, it is the next document a police officer is going to want to see if he stops you and/or you are involved in an accident.
- Always review your policy in full. It is a long lengthy document, but it is an important one that if not reviewed carefully, can lead to confusion and misconceptions down the road.
The CT Insurance Department located at https://portal.ct.gov/cid, can provide some useful information on coverage requirements and your obligations pursuant to law.
Contact ferrylaw.com if you have questions