In layman’s terms a “casualty” in terms of US Auto insurance, is any damage or incurred loss to property, a property owner or an individual or individuals. Casualty is the reason for auto insurance and your policy will be defined in terms of casualty eventualities and the benefits applicable to those casualties.
What kind of casualty instances will my US Auto Insurance cover?
The exact level of benefits paid in the instances of casualty, and the precise casualty instances that are covered by your policy, will be detailed in your insurance contract. You should familiarize yourself with these terms, and if you feel that they are insufficient for your needs you should discuss additional requirements with your insurer or insurance broker or insurance agent.
Bodily Injury (BI)
Bodily injury is commonly covered in all US auto insurance policies required for driving in most states. The specific level of benefit that applies to this instance of casualty, may be defined on a per claim or per policy basis or both. Coverage may apply to the policyholder and third parties but in the case of automobile liability insurance, it may only apply to third parties. Bodily Injury is defined as covering not just the medical expenses incurred for the treatment of any specific injury, but also damages occurring from the injury itself such as lost work time.
Property Damage (PD)
Again, property damage is usually covered in all US auto insurance policies and in most states, it is mandatory. Once again the level of benefit/coverage that applies to instances of property damage will either be on a per policy or a per claim basis (or a combination of the two). Property damage casualty clauses are there to cover the loss or damage of third party property and/or any other resultant losses caused by this damage. For example; if you were to hit a farmer’s barn and his chickens were to escape and then cause damage to another farmer’s fields, you would be liable for compensating both parties for their losses.
It is important for policyholders to understand which specific instances of casualty are covered on their auto insurance policies, and to be aware that events which are not specifically covered may result in personal financial liabilities which in some cases may be unlimited. If you do not understand your risks, you should consult with your insurance provider.