Some Illinois motorists may soon see an increase in their insurance rates. The Illinois House passed legislation in May 2013 that would raise the minimum liability coverage requirements from $20,000 to $25,000 for injury or death of one person, and from $40,000 to $50,000 for injury or death of two people, for all insurance policies issued or renewed on or after January 1, 2015. The new legislation would also raise minimum coverage amounts for property damage from $15,000 to $20,000.
The bill already passed the Illinois Senate so it has moved on to the governor’s desk for signature.
According to an article in the Chicago Tribune, one legislator estimates that insurance premiums could increase by about $75 for the additional insurance coverage – a relatively small price to pay to compensate the victims of auto accidents caused by negligence.
Nearly every state requires motorists to buy a minimum amount of liability insurance, and Illinois has been among the bottom half of the states for years. Illinois’ minimum insurance coverage amounts have not been raised in nearly 24 years so the increase is long overdue. As the bill’s proponent, state Rep. Laura Fine, has said, Illinois’s insurance coverage amounts have not kept pace with rising medical costs. “This will save people who are injured in an accident that is no fault of their own from some of the out-of-pocket medical costs they may incur,” Fine said.
In some cases, the minimum liability coverage is still insufficient to cover the injuries and damages caused by the auto accident. If a person is injured in an Illinois auto accident and the negligent motorist lacks sufficient insurance coverage to cover medical costs and other personal injury damages, the injured party may need to file a claim with his or her own insurance company for the remainder. Uninsured/underinsured motorist provisions can be confusing, with many nuances, so it is beneficial to discuss the claim with a skilled Illinois auto accident attorney.
Unlike some other states, including Michigan, Illinois is not a no-fault insurance state. Accordingly, Illinois insurance coverage uses modified comparative negligence tort principles to determine liability and compensation and drivers are required to maintain a certain minimum amount of insurance coverage.
The Chicago auto accident lawyers at Ankin Law Office, LLC are dedicated to protecting the rights of auto accidents victims and helping them to obtain full and fair compensation. Inadequate minimum liability coverage requirements, and no-fault insurance caps, significantly hinder the ability of an auto accident victim to obtain adequate financial recovery.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident or you would like more information on auto insurance laws, contact our office at (312) 600-0000 to schedule a free consultation with one of our skilled Chicago auto accident attorneys.