Related to auto insurance, what do PL and PD mean?

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Asked May 5, 2014

1 Answer


PL and PD are abbreviations used in the car insurance industry. PL stands for Public Liability and PD stands for Property Damage. Together, these two types of liability coverage are the foundation of all state required auto insurance laws. There are other types of car insurance available to drivers, but only New Hampshire does not stipulate PL/PD as part of the minimum requirements.

Public Liability insurance covers any injuries you cause in an accident. In most states, PL is stated as two parts, where the first part is the maximum payment that will be made for a single person in a single accident and the second number is the maximum that will be covered for all injuries in the accident. For example, your policy might show that you have Public Liability coverage of $25,000 per person, with a maximum of $50,000 per accident.

Property damage is similar to Public Liability, but is used to describe damages to someone's property. This could mean a mailbox, someone's car, or even personal property in the person's car that was damaged as a result of the collision. PL is stated can be a two part number the way that Public Liability is, or it may simply be expressed as a single number. For example, your state may require a minimum of $10,000 in PD coverage.

Keep in mind that the minimum requirements in your state may not be sufficient to cover all injuries or damages. For example, a serious accident could cause multiple injuries which quickly escalate beyond the $25,000/$50,000 limit of a standard policy. In most cases, increasing this amount is a good idea because it would cover more damages that would otherwise be your personal responsibility. Since PL/PD coverage includes any legal actions taken against you as a result of the incident, the out of pocket costs could become a serious financial hardship if you do not have enough coverage under your auto insurance policy.

Answered May 5, 2014 by Anonymous

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