Question: If I was hit from behind and the person who hit me had 100/300 bodily injury coverage and my doctor bills are $150,000, what will I get from his insurance company?
Answer: You will be compensated by the at-fault party’s insurance company up to the limits of their insured’s auto insurance policy.
This means if the driver who hit you has a per person bodily injury liability limit of $100,000, then that is all his insurance company will pay out on your medical claims, even if your medical expenses reach $150,000 or more.
Bodily injury limits can be confusing because there are two numbers listed, such as the other driver’s 100/300 limits that you mentioned.
With bodily injury liability, the first number tells you what the maximum amount is -- $100,000 in your situation -- that the car insurance provider will pay per person for doctor bills, loss of work, pain and suffering and anything else related to your injuries that would be covered by the person’s bodily injury liability coverage.
The second number, $300,000, tells you the maximum amount the other person’s insurance will pay for all injuries sustained in one accident. So if multiple people were injured, the most the insurer would pay out for all claims is $300,000, but still each person could claim only up to $100,000 individually.
When you have medical expenses that exceed the at-fault driver’s per person bodily injury limit, you can look to your own car insurance policy if you have medical coverages on it, such as medical payments, personal injury protection (PIP) and/or underinsured motorist bodily injury.
Medical payments and PIP coverage each come with a limit that you chose at the beginning of your policy, and this is the maximum that that coverage will pay out.
Underinsured motorist bodily injury (UNDUM), like bodily injury liability, has per person and per accident limits, and can be used to help cover medical expenses if the other (at-fault) driver has insufficient insurance.
If you have health insurance as well, then you can contact your health insurance provider to find out if they will cover any of your medical bills from your auto accident.
If you don’t have medical coverages on your car insurance policy, or health insurance (or do, but these coverages aren’t enough to cover all of your remaining medical expenses), then you may need to take legal action against the other driver to get paid for the expenses that are beyond his liability limits.
If you get a judgment in court and the other and the other party doesn’t pay it, then in many states, such as California and Texas, you can request the Department of Motor Vehicles to suspend their license.