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Personal liability occurs in the event an accident, in or out of your home, that results in bodily injury or property damage that you are held legally responsible for. Personal liability claims could include medical bills, legal fees and more if a guest is injured on your property, as well as coverage for accidental damage you are legally responsible for on someone else’s property. If you have personal liability coverage, you may be able to avoid paying out of pocket for incidents like these, up to your coverage limits. That’s why personal liability coverage is an important component of your homeowners insurance or renters insurance policy.
Now that you know the definition of personal liability insurance, here's a real life example: let's say a guest visits your home and while walking through your garage is hit by a falling ladder. The guest suffers a broken arm and sues you for damages – which can be thousands of dollars. This is where personal liability insurance can kick in. Personal liability will cover the costs of medical bills, as well as your legal defense fees, up to the limit of your liability coverage. However, personal liability coverage may also be able to cover an incident that occurs outside your home or property.
What does personal liability insurance cover?
Under your basic homeowners insurance or renters insurance policy, personal liability coverage may protect you under the following circumstances, up to your policy limits:
- Lawsuits you may face if an accident occurs
- Bodily injury to an individual
- Property damage that occurs as a result of your negligence
If the liability limits of your policy don’t meet your needs, you may want to consider additional coverage such as personal umbrella liability insurance, which provides an extra layer of personal liability protection. This will help to cover costs if there's a serious auto accident or accident on your property that exceed the limits of your liability coverage.
What isn’t covered by personal liability insurance?
While your standard home or renters insurance will cover certain personal liability claims, there are other claims that may not be covered, such as:
- Liability resulting from an automobile accident (this will typically be covered by your auto insurance)
- Bodily injury or property damage caused intentionally by you or a family member in your home
- Injuries or damages sustained by you or family members in your home
- Business activities or claims related to your profession
Be sure to carefully review your home or renters policy so that you have a solid understanding of what is and isn’t covered by personal liability insurance. If you don’t currently have personal liability coverage for your home, contact a Nationwide agent or get a home insurance quote today. Choose the personal liability policy limit that’s right for you and start getting the coverage you need.