Full coverage auto insurance in Texas is insurance coverage that includes state-mandated bodily injury and property damage liability coverage, plus collision and comprehensive coverage, medical payments coverage, and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. While there is no single agreed-on definition of “full coverage” in Texas, or anywhere else, these are the most important kinds of protection drivers can buy. Full coverage insurance doesn’t cover all possible losses but should shield you from the most expensive ones.
Texas requires its drivers to carry liability insurance to cover the other driver’s losses in an accident. Mandated minimums are $30,000 in injury liability per person, up to a total of $60,000 per accident, and $25,000 in property damage coverage. This isn’t a lot of coverage. Ideally, your liability coverage should equal the financial assets you need to protect. For example, if you have a $1 million stock portfolio to provide you with income now or in retirement, you don’t want to lose it all in a lawsuit. Buying $1 million worth of liability protection would be a good idea, in this case.
No matter who is at fault, collision coverage pays for repairs or replacement of your car after a crash. Comprehensive insurance pays if your car is stolen or damaged by wind, fire, flood, vandalism or falling objects. Basically, it covers damage from anything other than a collision. Unlike liability insurance that comes with specific coverage limits, collision and comprehensive are based on the fair market value of your car. In Texas, if you are financing or leasing your car, your lender or leasing company will require you to carry collision and comprehensive.
Medical payments (MedPay) coverage is often thought of as part of full coverage auto insurance. If your health insurance has coverage gaps, low limits or high deductibles, MedPay is a relatively cheap way to cover your injuries in case of a car accident. However, if you have good health insurance, it may offer many of the same benefits as MedPay. Likewise, you may have other types of insurance (e.g., health insurance, collision coverage, etc.) that make uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance unnecessary. It’s smart to compare coverages and see which kind will provide you with the best protection.
Not every Texan needs every type of insurance that can be included in a full coverage policy. But it’s useful to review your needs regularly. Your situation can change over time. You want to be sure your insurance is keeping pace.
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