Washington, D.C. Car and Motorcycle Insurance Law
Required Minimum Bodily Injury Liability Coverage
- $25,000 per person injured in any one accident and $50,000 for all persons injured in any one accident
Required Minimum Property Damage Liability Coverage
- $10,000 for damage to property in any one accident
Optional Insurance Coverage
- Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage. The minimum amount of UM protection required in D.C. is $25,000 per person injured in any one accident and $50,000 for all persons injured in any one accident, and property damage in the amount of $5,000 for property loss in one accident.
- Underinsured Motorist (UIM) Coverage. UIM is only available in amounts up to the amount of UM purchased.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP). This optional insurance coverage pays medical and rehabilitation expenses, work loss, and funeral benefits to the insured or an occupant of an insured’s vehicle or of a vehicle which the insured is driving, without regard to fault. The maximum amount of benefits paid for medical and rehabilitation expenses cannot be less than $50,000. Medical and rehabilitation benefits can be purchased to cover up to $100,000 per person. The maximum amount paid for work loss cannot be less than $12,000. Work loss benefits can be purchased to cover up to $24,000. Funeral benefits are paid at actual costs up to $4,000. However, when a D.C. resident chooses this type of no-fault insurance, his or her ability to sue a negligent driver for pain and suffering is severely limited. An injured person who elects PIP can only sue an at-fault party if the victim’s injury resulted in substantial permanent scarring or disfigurement, permanent impairment which significantly affects the victim’s ability to perform professional or daily activities, or an impairment that prevents the victim from performing all or most of his or her daily activities for more than 180 continuous days, or in cases where medical and rehabilitation expenses or work loss exceeds the amount of PIP benefits available. Whether a person’s injuries meet those thresholds is a question of law for a judge to decide.
Special Rules for Motorcycle Owners
- In D.C., an insurance company is not required to offer UIM coverage to motorcycle owners. However, Washington, D.C. requires all registered vehicles to be insured to cover against damage caused (liability insurance at the $25,000/$50,000/$10,000 limits) and against damage incurred by uninsured motorists (must have uninsured and underinsured motorists insurance coverage at the limits of $25,000/$50,000/$5,000).
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Note: Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia. This information is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia, although if you are injured in an accident, we have relationships with other personal injury attorneys and lawyers throughout the United States.