Skip to content

Auto Insurance Liability: Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Auto liability insurance doesn't need to be confusing! We've broken down the different parts to help you understand why it's so important.

woman squating taking a picture with her cell phone of a minor car accident

What is auto liability insurance?

If you're at fault for an accident, the liability part of your car insurance is what helps pay for the damages to the other party.

These damages can include property and bodily injury expenses up to your limits. Also, most states require auto liability insurance for you to legally drive your vehicle.

What does auto liability insurance cover?

Auto liability coverage has 2 parts, property damage and bodily injury.

  • Bodily Injury Liability: If you're responsible for an accident and someone else gets hurt, Bodily Injury Liability Coverage will pay for their medical costs and out-of-pocket expenses. Plus, it may cover associated legal defense costs.
  • Property Damage Liability: If you're found legally responsible for a car accident, this coverage pays for costs associated with repairing or replacing another person's property. Usually, this coverage kicks in when you damage another person's car, but can also apply to any other type of property you damage, like a mailbox or fence."

What doesn't auto liability insurance cover?

Liability coverage on your auto insurance policy normally won't cover

  • Costs to repair your vehicle
  • Medical expenses associated with your injuries in the event of an accident

Coverage for your damages and injuries fall under your auto insurance policy's

Is auto liability coverage required?

Yes! Almost every state requires some form of liability insurance to legally drive a vehicle. The required liability limits in each state will vary.

How much liability coverage do I need?

It can be tempting to go with the state minimum to help keep your auto insurance costs low. However, what if you're involved in a serious accident?

If you have the state minimum, it may end up costing you a lot more than a few extra dollars you saved on insurance.

Ask yourself this question when you think about your liability limits: How much can I afford to pay out-of-pocket if I'm at-fault for an accident and the damages are more than my limits?

Sure, minor accident like fender benders may not seem like much, but what about more serious ones? Think about accidents with multiple vehicles and people. Could you pay for every vehicle's damages and every person's medical bills involved in an accident? What if everyone involved decided to file a lawsuit against you?

Good news! It's not as costly as you may think to raise your liability coverage above state limits. This is especially true if you have a good driving record!

Remember, when getting auto insurance quotes, it's important to compare different liability limits and rates. We're happy to chat about any coverage questions you may have. From minimum liability requirements where you live to how much you may need, we've got you covered.

What's the difference between liability and “full” coverage auto insurance?

”Full” coverage car insurance is a general term agents, lenders, and car dealerships refer to as an auto insurance package. These packages normally group together Liability, Comprehensive, and Collision Coverages.

Remember, liability car insurance only pays for damages to other vehicles or injuries to other people if you're at fault for an accident. What some call “full” coverage insurance can include

  • Liability
  • Comprehensive
  • Collision
  • Medical Expense Coverages

Together, these can help to protect yourself and others. So to get more protection than just liability, you'll need to add additional coverages.

Get your free quote with Liberty Mutual online to see how coverages and limits impact your rate.

Get a car insurance quote in under 10 minutes and only pay for what you need.

You could save up to 12% when you buy customized car insurance online

check mark icon
check mark icon
check mark icon
check mark icon

Related content

Car Insurance 101
animated woman leaning against a yellow car
What is “full coverage” car insurance, and do you need it?

Begin your free online quote


Ready for a quote?

Please note: Information presented on this page is intended to be general information about insurance and is not specific to Liberty Mutual policies. Policies and coverages vary by state and insurer. Contact your insurance company to understand specifics regarding your policy and coverages.