Arizona Raises Car Insurance Limits
After 47 years, Arizona will finally see an increase in the minimum car insurance limits required by law
In June, Governor Ducey signed a law that will increase Arizona’s required minimum insurance limits for car insurance policies purchased after July 1, 2020. The current minimum amount of insurance required by law is $15,000 per injured person, $30,000 per incident, and $10,000 for property damage. This means that if a negligent driver injures an innocent party, the most that injured party can receive is $15,000. The current limit is sorely lacking. An MRI alone can cost $1500-3000 dollars. It is rare for an ambulance bill to be less than $1000. If you are seriously injured in a crash, Arizona’s current limits will not pay your medical bills, let alone your pain and suffering and other general damages.
The new law will mandate that every vehicle carry insurance as follows:
- $25,000 per injured party
- $50,000 per incident
- $15,000 property damage
In 1972, the average spending per capita on healthcare was $431/year. Due to inflation and advances in medicine, that figure has soared to $10,739 in 2017 and continues to rise. Only the state of Florida has lower minimum limits ($10,000 per person). Arizona’s increase will put us on par with a majority of other states. While the $10,000 increase in bodily injury coverage is a great improvement, it still fails to match inflation over the past 47 years.
Curiously, a similar bill passed Arizona’s house and senate in 2017 but Governor Ducey vetoed it. That bill would have raised property damage limits to $25,000, rather than the $15,000 that the 2019 signed bill mandates.
It is expected that those persons carrying minimum insurance will pay $3-8 more per month. It should be noted that Arizona does not require that vehicles carry collision, underinsured (UIM) or uninsured (UM) motorist insurance. The Tucson Injury Lawyers at the Rockafellow Law Firm highly encourage collision, UIM and UM policies as they protect you and your passengers in the event that a person carrying no insurance or insufficient insurance causes serious harm to your vehicle’s occupants. The average price of a new car is now over $37,000. Compare that to 1972 when the average new car price was $3800. Even under the new law, if your $30,000 car is totaled by a negligent driver with a minimum policy, their $15,000 policy will not replace your vehicle. Therefore, it is still important to purchase these additional coverages that will cover you if the at-fault party is not sufficiently insured.
This new law is a welcome improvement that greatly improves protection for innocent injured parties.