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North Carolina Will Soon Have Some of the Highest Auto Liability Minimums

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Starting next year, the minimum automobile liability coverage in North Carolina will jump significantly, thanks to a 2023 law that raised the minimum requirement for the first time in 25 years.

Since 1999, North Carolina drivers have been required to have at least 30/60/25 coverage, or $30,000 per person injured; $60,000 per accident; and $25,000 for property damage. Senate Bill 452, which became law in October, raised the minimum to 50/100/50, or $50,000 per person; $100,000 per accident; and $50,000 for property damage, starting Jan. 1, 2025.

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The law makes North Carolina one of only a handful of states with minimums that high, the National Law Review reported. Only Maine, Michigan and Alabama have minimum requirements of 50/100. No other state requires more than $25,000 for property damage.

The change will raise auto insurance rates in the state about 5%, or roughly $50 a year for some drivers, WRAL TV news reported.

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The law also changed uninsured motorist coverage requirements. Starting in January, an insured, injured driver will be able to collect the full limit from her uninsured policy, plus the payout from the at-fault driver’s liability coverage. Under previous state law, insurers could deduct the at-fault liability amount from the uninsured coverage payout.

SB 452 does provide some parameters, though. Uninsured coverage will not automatically pay the policy limit: Carriers can consider present and future medical expenses, lost wages, and other costs, the Ward & Smith law firm wrote recently.

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North Carolina

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