If you are buying an RV, you may wonder, “What is liability insurance, and how much do I need?” Liability insurance is your protection when you cause an accident and are required to pay for the injuries and damages.
Liability insurance is required for all automobiles and RVs in nearly every state. If you are looking for RV coverage, or are looking to lower your RV insurance costs, talk to a member agent in our network.
Your agent will work with you to compare plans and customize a policy to ensure that you are protected financially. Contact an independent agent to get the coverage you need.
What Does Liability Insurance Cover?
- Damage to property of others: If you hit another car and cause damage to that vehicle, your RV liability insurance would cover the costs of repairing or replacing the car.
- Bodily injury to others: If the other driver and/or passenger(s) are injured, your liability insurance will pay for the emergency transport, costs of emergency medical care and follow-up care.
- Lawsuits arising from an accident: If the driver files a lawsuit against you, liability insurance would cover the legal costs associated with the suit.
- Liability claims from visitors: If you are a full-time motorhome dweller and you use your motorhome as both your vehicle and your living space, your RV liability insurance should be designed to cover liability claims similar to those you may encounter in a residential home.
Liability can be defined as legal responsibility for your acts or omissions. So, whether you act irresponsibly or fail to see a stop sign and drive through an intersection, you are legally liable to pay the bodily injury costs, lost wages, funeral costs, and property damage for others involved in the accident.
You will also need to pay for your legal defense if you are sued.
The amount of these costs that will be covered by your RV liability insurance depends on the limits you set when you buy your policy. If the cost of an accident exceeds your defined limits, you will be responsible for the additional costs.
By purchasing a motorhome insurance policy with a higher premium, you can avoid out-of-pocket expenses.
RV Insurance Protects You from Financial Difficulty
The main reason to buy an adequate amount of RV liability insurance is because it mitigates your risk of financial ruin. It's exceptionally difficult to predict accidents, or how severe and costly they will be when they happen. Your RV liability insurance will prepare you for unforeseen events.
When deciding how much RV liability insurance you want, think about what could happen in an extreme situation and how much it could cost.
What could bodily injury costs amount to if you are responsible for an accident that leaves another person in need of a long hospital stay, surgery and rehabilitation? What could you be responsible to pay if you damaged another person’s property? What might you pay in legal fees if you are sued?
These are all questions to talk over with an agent who is focused on meeting your needs and ensuring that you are covered if the worst happens. The answers to these questions will give you a better idea of your overall RV insurance cost, and will, therefore, help you plan for the future.
What Are Liability Premium Limits?
A typical liability plan has three parts: bodily injury for one person, bodily injury for all persons involved, and property damage. Each part has a set limit, which you determine when you buy your policy.
For example, if your policy has a 30/60/15 limit, your insurance company will pay:
- Up to $30,000 for one person’s bodily injuries, including lost wages, funeral costs, or hospitalization.
- Up to $60,000 for bodily injuries for more than one person, including lost wages, funeral costs, or hospitalization.
- Up to $15,000 to repair or replace any damaged property, including cars, landscaping, street signs, etc.
You could also have a single liability limit like 300, for example. Your 300 limit would provide compensation for $300,000 worth of bodily injury and property damages combined. Talk to your agent to make sure you understand the liability limits on your RV insurance policy.
How Much Will You Pay in Liability Costs?
Let’s examine a scenario where you cause an accident that destroys the other car and the driver and passengers are injured. How much your insurance company will pay, and how much you will pay out of pocket, depends on your liability limits.
The cost of bodily injuries you’re liable for is $100,000 and the property damage costs for the car is $20,000. In this case, the out-of-pocket costs you would be responsible to pay would be:
- $40,000 in bodily injury costs
- $5,000 in property damage costs
- Totaling $45,000 out-of-pocket
It’s a good idea to purchase ample liability insurance; the minimum limits in your state might not be enough to protect you financially if you cause an accident. If you’re worried your liability insurance won’t cover you adequately, talk to your agent.
You may be able to increase your liability limits or purchase an umbrella insurance policy to cover you in case a major accident threatens your bottom line.
Umbrella Policies for RV Insurance
To get more extensive RV liability insurance than the minimums required in your state, talk to your agent. You can either increase your limits, or consider buying an umbrella liability policy, which will provide additional coverage if the costs associated with your accident exceed the limits of your liability coverage.
Liability coverage is required for motorhome owners in nearly every state. Unfortunately, liability coverage may not be enough to cover costs from a severe crash.
How Is Your Premium Rate Determined?
The rate of your liability insurance is based on three primary factors:
- Your RV: The make, model and year affect the overall costs. For example, a travel trailer typically costs less than a Class A conventional motorhome, which means it may be cheaper to repair or replace in a major collision. It is also important to consider how you use the motorhome; for example, if you are a full-timer, you will most likely need more RV liability insurance.
- Your driving history: If you have traffic citations and accidents on your driving record, insurance companies may consider you at a higher risk for another collision. This means you will likely have a more expensive rate to pay.
- Your state: Where you live and travel will make a difference as well. Each state has different requirements for motorhome liability coverage, and the risks you face in each state differ as well.
Can You Get Accurate Online Quotes?
Online RV insurance quotes are a great way to start your coverage search. You can easily compile some coverage options this way, but you might still have questions or concerns about your RV insurance. An independent agent is a great resource at times like these.
Are you a full-time motorhome owner? Do you use your RV only seasonally? Do you have safety gear, such as anti-lock brakes that could result in a discount? Is the minimum RV liability insurance requirement in your state particularly low?
These are all questions to review with a knowledgeable insurance professional, like an independent agent in our network. There may be a number of reasons to increase coverage, add personal injury protection, and other upgrades.
An independent agent can personally answer the above questions, provide accurate quotes and produce a policy customized for you. When you are ready to buy, find an agent in our network to compare policies from several insurance companies and find the right fit for you.