In Maryland, all drivers must be properly insured according to the state’s minimum legal coverage requirements. In some states, this requirement is satisfied by keeping a proof of insurance card in your vehicle. However, Maryland requires a signed insurance document to be submitted to the state along with your registration documents each time that you renew the registration. Penalties associated with non-compliance are harsh, so it is in your best interest to maintain an active and protective insurance policy at all times.
The Many Auto Insurance Requirements for Maryland Drivers
The necessary insurance coverage in many states only relates to liability insurance, but Maryland has more robust coverage requirements for its drivers. Liability insurance should be purchased with $15,000 coverage for property damage, $30,000 for bodily injury per person and $60,000 total bodily injury benefits for each claim. This is coverage that is used to help you meet the state’s financial responsibility law. This law requires drivers to pay for any expenses related to an accident that they caused. In addition, underinsured or uninsured motorist insurance with these same limits is required per state law. There is also a requirement for personal injury protection coverage. This is coverage that pays for your personal medical expenses if you are in an accident, and the minimum limit is $2,500. Remember that these are the absolute minimum requirements that all drivers in this state must meet at all times. You also may benefit by increasing the coverage limits or by buying optional coverage types.
Failure to Comply with Maryland’s Coverage Requirements
You do not have to be pulled over by law enforcement or involved in an accident in order to be caught driving without insurance in this state. The state monitors the insurance status of its drivers electronically through a database. If you are not properly insured, the state may charge a monetary fine that increases for each additional day that you are uninsured. It could also revoke or suspend your license and registration. If you are caught providing falsified insurance documents, you could potentially be jailed for up to a full year. If you are in an accident while you are not properly insured, you also may have to pay a tremendous amount of money out of your personal funds that your insurance policy would have otherwise paid on your behalf. You can see that you cannot afford to be uninsured or underinsured at any time.
The Benefits of Buying Additional Coverage
In addition to buying the necessary insurance coverage required by the state, an auto lender may also have additional insurance requirements. The requirement for comprehensive and collision coverage are common, and this is because auto lenders want you to have coverage that protects the value of their loan’s collateral. This coverage comes with the benefit of providing you with financial means to repair your own damaged vehicle after a mishap. The lender could force you to buy coverage to meet its requirement. Additional coverage types available can save you money in different ways. Some of the other types of auto insurance to consider adding to your policy include rental car coverage, towing insurance, gap insurance, personal property insurance and more. Spend time understanding each coverage type and its benefits before you set up coverage.
Auto insurance needs vary from year to year. If you want to ensure that you are always properly insured while also having the most affordable auto insurance policy available, you must regularly review your coverage and shop for lower rates. While this can take time, it ultimately may save you a tremendous amount of money in different ways.