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Louisiana Car Insurance

Drivers looking for Louisiana car insurance need to be aware that this is not a no-fault state. Instead, people injured as the result of an accident in LA have the right to sue for damages, and your car insurance company will pay benefits up to the policy limit you choose. You will want to make sure that you have sufficient car insurance coverage to pay these expenses if you will be driving in Louisiana.

Louisiana Car Insurance: Mandatory Coverage

Louisiana drivers are required to carry liability insurance, which pays for damage to the other person's vehicle as well as his or her medical expenses. Each state sets a minimum level of coverage for auto insurance, and in Louisiana the amount of insurance you need to buy will depend on how much your vehicle weighs. If your vehicle weighs 20,000 lbs or less, then you need to buy 10/20/10 in insurance coverage.

This means that the limit payable for personal injuries to an individual hurt in an accident is $10,000 and the cap on all people injured in the same accident is $20,000. Damage to property, including the other driver's vehicle is capped at $10,000.

For a vehicle weighing between 20,001-50,000 lbs, the limits go up to 25/50/25, and in the case of a large vehicle that weighs more than 50,001 lbs, you will need to have 100/300/25 in coverage in place.

You can choose to carry on the minimum level of insurance coverage if you like, but this may not be the best course of action. If an accident occurs, your insurance company will pay a claim up to your policy limit. Any money owed after that will be your responsibility.

In the case of a serious accident, the $10,000 minimum in liability coverage won't go very far. You may be looking at using any savings you have or even selling your property to pay for damages. If you consider the implications of not having adequate liability insurance, the amount you are charged for your premium is money well spent.

Louisiana Car Insurance: Optional Coverage

The minimum levels of car insurance coverage in Louisiana are quite low, and the last thing you want is to be injured in an accident yourself only to find that the other driver doesn't have adequate insurance coverage. To protect yourself and your family, it makes good sense to buy:

  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage - This type of insurance tops up the other driver's insurance coverage (up to the policy limit you choose) or covers you if you are injured or your car is damaged as the result of a hit-and-run accident.

You may also want to look at obtaining:

  • Collision and Comprehensive Coverage - This way, if your car is damaged in an accident for which you are considered responsible, your insurance company will pay to repair it. You are also protected if your car is stolen or vandalized. Collision and comprehensive coverage also pays if your car is damaged from wind, hail, hurricanes, and flooding.

    As long as you are still making car payments, the lender may require you to carry collision and comprehensive insurance on your vehicle. Once the car is fully paid for, you will need to decide whether you want to continue to pay for this coverage. If you would be able to afford to repair or replace the car on your own, then you may want to skip this coverage. However, if your budget is too tight to afford car payments, keeping this coverage may make sense.

    When you are trying to decide whether to drop the collision and comprehensive coverage, do keep in mind that in the event your car is totaled, the insurance company will only compensate you for the value of the vehicle as of the date of the accident, not the full replacement value. If you have owned the car for a number of years, then the benefits of having this coverage may not outweigh the amount you are paying in premiums.

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