What is accidental death benefit coverage?

Accidental death benefit (ADB or ADD) pays for death expenses if, in a covered auto accident, bodily injury causes the death of you or a covered family member. The benefit paid is according to the terms of your specific ADD policy.

Also referred to as accidental death and accidental death indemnity, ADB is not a required car insurance coverage type.

If you are killed in an auto accident and are without accidental death benefit coverage, your family may personally have to pay out-of-pocket for your death expenses. If you have other coverage (with auto or life insurance) that will pay out a death benefit, this coverage may be unnecessary.

Personal injury protection (PIP)

If you live in a no-fault state than your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverages typically come with a death benefit. For example, in Florida the usual PIP policy has a $5000 death benefit payout. In New York the normal PIP coverage has a $2,000 death benefit (in addition to the $50,000 basic No-Fault limit), payable to the estate of a person eligible for No-Fault benefits who is killed in a motor vehicle accident.

Medical Payments coverage (MedPay), usually an optional coverage, may also come with a death benefit or may cover funeral expenses.

If you want to make sure you have coverage for death resulting from a motor vehicle accident you should read through your policy and discuss any questions you have about a death payout with your agent. Also your state's insurance regulator can give you information on your state's laws and which coverages your state insurers can offer that include death benefits for injuries sustained in an auto accident.

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Michelle Megna
Editorial Director

Michelle is a writer, editor and expert on car insurance and personal finance. Prior to joining CarInsurance.com, she reported and edited articles on technology, lifestyle, education and government for magazines, websites and major newspapers, including the New York Daily News.