Updated: March 2017
Property damage liability coverage
helps pay for the damage that you cause to another vehicle, or other types of property. Read on for more information about property damage liability, and how to determine how much coverage you should buy as part of your auto insurance policy.
When you're behind the wheel of a vehicle, there are various risks you may face. The most obvious is a potential collision with another vehicle. If you cause such a crash, property damage liability coverage would help cover damages you are held responsible for.
But, what if you damage something with your vehicle that isn't another car? Property damage liability coverage would also help pay for the damages you cause to another person's property, such as a fence or building front.
Property damage liability coverage usually does not cover damage to your own vehicle. You may want to consider other coverages, such as collision coverage, to help cover the cost to repair your own vehicle.
Every state requires a driver to carry a specified minimum limit of liability coverage. States generally require bodily injury and property damage liability coverage.
The mandatory coverage limits can differ from state to state. For example, in California, drivers are required to have at least $5,000 of property damage liability coverage. In Texas, the minimum amount is $25,000. In Nevada, it's $10,000. Find out what the mandatory property damage insurance limit is in your state by clicking here.
You can usually opt to purchase limits higher than the minimum set by your state. If your insurance policy only offers up to $10,000 of coverage and the amount of damage you cause exceeds that, you have to pay the difference out of pocket. Having a higher limit of liability coverage may help you avoid having to pay out of pocket after an at-fault accident.
The higher you set your coverage limits, the higher your insurance premiums will likely be. As you consider how high to set your limits, you may want to discuss your options with an insurance agent in your area.