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Minimum auto Liability limits can be financially devastating for the individuals that have them. The amount of protection is pathetic. Let's take a person who has these putrid limits and has a serious at fault accident with another person.  Consider their car hits ice, they lose control and slam into another driver. The other driver ends up in the hospital, requiring surgery, rehabilitation, they are missing work and they may have a permanent injury as a result. In MO, you will have only $25,000 worth of coverage if you only have State minimum limits. The Insurance company knows a huge settlement demand is coming that will far exceed $25k. They are not going to waste any time on this, they will simply stroke a check for $25k and walk. Now the settlement comes in for quarter of a million dollars and your on the hook for the balance ($225k if my math is correct). You can go back to the company and plead all you want, but they are done with you!

The typical asshole response is, "Well, I don't have anything anyway." That's true, and your not going to have much in the future. Here's why, the injured person, has good Underinsured Motorist limits (a topic for another day) on their policy. In fact, enough to cover the balance of the settlement. Good news for them, bad news for the deadbeat! Why, because now the Insurance company wants their money back, and they have the resources to go after you - and they will! "They won't get anything from me anyway, remember?!" That is beauty of wage garnishment.

We had a client get rear ended by an uninsured motorist some years ago. A fit gentleman, so fortunately, no injury.  He did have $3,000 in damage to his vehicle.  He also had collision coverage, so he made a claim on his policy.  He had dealt with the frustration of paying the deductible, but  was able to get his car repaired. I had forgotten about the claim, but he called me up 2 years later and said "I got a $500 check in the mail today from the Insurance company!" They had tracked the driver down (even though she moved out of the state) and spent the last several months collecting what was owed to them and recovering the Insured's deductible.   The companies we represent don't play around!  If you want that kind of support from your Insurance company, send me an email: dan@hebbeln-ins.com

I bring this story up because the cost to double or even quadruple your limits is not that much. In fact you can increase your deductibles to nearly or entirely offset the increase. If a claim does happen, it's a lot easier to come up with an extra $250 or $500 for a deductible than several thousand for a settlement!


For this one, I'm feeling Facebook as the best share option below.  A lot of young people, just starting out, get State Minimum limits then forget they have them and pay their renewal each year without revisiting - this is a good reminder for them that may save them big time!

Posted 8:06 AM  View Comments

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Hebbeln Insurance
744 Spirit of St Louis Blvd, Suite H
Chesterfield, MO 63005
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