Massachusetts, spread over thousands of miles, has roadways from downtown Boston to Cape Cod and from Stockbridge to Gloucester. These roadways have over 4.6 million licensed drivers using their vehicles and adding an average of 8300 miles every year.
The same roads may also result in traffic accidents and crashes affecting both lives and vehicles involved. Whether you live in the Bay State or drive through it, car insurance in Massachusetts is a legal and standard requirement.
Though car insurance is mandatory with first-party medical benefits for all drivers in the state, the required limits are relatively low. It follows the no-fault car insurance laws with 14 other states in the country. Here is all that you may need to know about these regulations and laws.
What Does No-Fault Car Insurance Imply in Massachusetts?
In no-fault insurance, your coverage is liable to pay for medical bills or other out of pocket expenses incurred by any person covered by the respective policy. The extent of coverage is limited, and it applies regardless of the person responsible for the accident.
Personal injury protection or PIP coverage in Massachusetts. It allows a maximum amount of $8000 per person to cover medical expenses. It also covers lost wages due to missed time, funeral expenses, and household costs of managing your home by someone else.
However, no-fault coverage does not compensate for pain and emotional suffering or any other non-monetary loss resulting from the accident or crash. The state allows special thresholds for your injuries to qualify for making a third-party insurance claim. But it can also take legal action against the responsible driver.
Another crucial thing to keep in mind is that Massachusetts has a no-fault system that applies only to the injuries resulting from an auto accident without any coverage for vehicle damage claims. You can claim damages to your vehicle against the driver at fault without any limitations.
When Can You Pursue a Claim Against the Driver at Fault?
The state of Massachusetts allows car crash victims to file a lawsuit or a third-party insurance claim against the at-fault driver if:
● You incur a minimum of $2000 for reasonable medical costs
● Your injuries from the accidents resulted in a fractured bone, permanent disfigurement, or hearing/sight loss
In any of these circumstances, you don’t have to feel restricted by a no-fault claim under your car insurance. Instead, you can file a claim against the driver causing the accident via a third-party insurance or personal injury case. This will help you get compensation for every loss, including non-monetary damages, pain, and emotional trauma.
How Can You Purchase Car Insurance in the State?
When you reside in Massachusetts, you can’t drive your new car off the lot without buying car insurance. Sometimes, interest rates can be slightly higher for first-time auto buyers because they lack the veteran drivers’ experience. You can make the most of your options by shopping around and choosing a third-party insurance provider for the best coverage. Before you proceed, though, you must know about the extent of coverage you need in this state.
Car Insurance Coverage Mandatory in the State
If you wish to drive your car legally in Massachusetts, it is essential to carry minimum insurance depending on the type of policy. For example, you need $20,000 of liability coverage for bodily injuries to each person if you cause the crash.
Also, the state mandates total liability coverage of $40,000 per accident caused by you. $5000 goes for property damage, and uninsured motorist coverage goes to $20,000 per person or $40,000 per accident for bodily injuries sustained by you or any other beneficiary if hit by an uninsured driver.
In Massachusetts, you don’t have to carry any insurance for damages to your vehicle since no-fault doesn’t cover vehicle damage. If you want insurance for repairs and replacement of your damaged car, you need to buy additional collision or comprehensive coverage. Even for leased or financed vehicles, you have to go for the additional coverage.
What are the Penalties for Driving without Insurance?
Driving without car insurance in Massachusetts attracts a fine of a minimum of $500. The state also requires you to pay an amount that equals insurance premiums at the highest market rate over a year. The rates are determined at the time of the crash, depending on the driver’s risks and location. In extreme circumstances leading to loss of life or severe injuries, you may have to face suspension of your license and jail time.
Remember all these above mentioned key points. Don’t hesitate to ask your insurance company about your rights, responsibilities, and coverage amount if you have any doubts.