Is Alabama a No-Fault State?

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  • Is Alabama a No-Fault State?

While Alabama isn’t a no-fault state, insurers in the state do offer a first-party medical benefit for policyholders to carry on their policies to cover their medical expenses. The Heart of Dixie mandates all drivers must have an auto insurance policy with at least some liability coverage, but a policy with any additional coverages is considered full coverage. 

Let’s take a look at why Alabama isn’t a no-fault state, how accidents are handled in the state, and what coverage all drivers should have on their Alabama car insurance policies.

Is Alabama a No-Fault State?

Those with auto insurance in Alabama aren’t required to have no-fault coverage since it isn’t a no-fault state. No-fault states typically mandate drivers to carry a first-party medical benefit (FPMB) on their auto insurance policies to cover their medical expenses should they be injured in a car accident.

No-fault laws are signed into effect to make the process of receiving insurance benefits quicker for victims of car accidents. Often, states with a high population will enact a no-fault law because it takes longer for claims to be processed when fault must be assigned. In tort states like Alabama, a driver must be assigned fault before anyone can begin receiving insurance benefits. However, in a tort state, it may take longer for victims to receive financial assistance for their accident expenses because the claim filing system gets backed up.

In a no-fault state, drivers mostly rely on themselves for coverage in the event of an accident. However, in a tort state, the at-fault driver must use their liability coverage to cover the victim’s expenses. When an at-fault driver can’t pay for the expenses, they owe the victim, whether because they were driving without insurance or the victim’s expenses surpass their liability limit, the victim can sue the at-fault party to receive the funds they need. However, assigning fault and filing a claim with someone else’s insurance can take time and back up both the legal and insurance systems.

While Alabama is a tort state and only requires drivers to carry liability coverage, drivers can carry an FPMB on their full coverage policies to help cover their own expenses in an accident, whether they’re found at fault or not. Having an FPMB on one’s policy can make the process of receiving benefits much quicker, as policyholders can begin receiving coverage once they reach their deductible. 

Is Alabama a No-Fault State for Auto Accidents?

The Heart of Dixie isn’t a no-fault state for auto accidents. This means drivers aren’t required to carry personal injury protection in Alabama or any other FPMB. While drivers aren’t required to have an FPMB on their insurance policies, they may add this coverage to a full coverage policy. 

The minimum legal amount of coverage Alabamans must have on their policies is $25,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 in bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 in property damage liability per accident. Those who lease or finance their vehicles may be legally required to have collision and comprehensive coverages on their policy as a part of their legally binding contract. 

While a full coverage policy can be more expensive than a liability-only one, investing in a full coverage policy is often more cost-effective, so you have protection when you really need it. The average cost of a full coverage policy in Alabama is about $1,670 annually, plus whatever deductible you select.

Typically, those who select a high deductible have lower premiums, and those who select a low deductible have higher premiums. Many of the top insurers in the state offer policies with premiums below the state average and offer plenty of stackable discounts to lower premiums even further. 

The average full coverage policy in the Heart of Dixie includes a higher liability limit than what’s legally necessary, an FPMB such as medical payments coverage (MedPay), uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage (UM), collision coverage, and comprehensive coverage, among other optional coverages. 

While a liability-only policy will only protect the victim in an accident with an at-fault policyholder, a full coverage policy offers protection that directly impacts the policyholder, regardless of fault. While it’s enticing to forgo the high premiums associated with a full coverage policy, they’re often far less expensive than the costs associated with an at-fault accident with minimum coverage. 

Whatever policy you choose, ensuring it makes sense for your comfort level and budget is crucial. However, it’s important to remember that driving without insurance in the Heart of Dixie is illegal. The penalties for driving uninsured can range from fines, license and registration suspension, or even jail time. Plus, those convicted of driving uninsured may have to file for SR-22 insurance, which may raise one’s premiums for years to come. 

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Why Is Alabama an At-Fault State?

Alabama is an at-fault or tort state for a few different reasons. States will adopt a no-fault law if there is a high population, densely populated cities, or an increased number of uninsured drivers. Alabama remains a tort state without a no-fault law because it doesn’t have densely populated cities, the state population is average, and the population of uninsured drivers is about 12%, which is on par with the national average.

When states have high populations, whether generalized or because of a few densely populated cities, more drivers are on the road. With an increased number of drivers on the road, there’s a higher statistical likelihood of accidents.

An increased risk of accidents leads people to file more claims and lawsuits, thus clogging both the insurance and legal systems. Therefore, states enact no-fault laws to mitigate the burden on these vital systems.

However, when a state has an average population and an average number of uninsured drivers, the insurance and legal systems can run efficiently. Since Alabama has an average population and number of uninsured drivers, the state doesn’t need to adopt no-fault laws. 

How To Find an Alabama Car Insurance Quote

Whether you’re looking for the cheapest policy in the state or the one with the best coverage, the best way to find the right one is to get and compare quotes online. By getting and comparing quotes from several insurers, you can tailor your policy to meet your needs and see how far you can stretch your dollar. 

Luckily for you, quotes are our forte here at Clovered. We even have a free quoting tool you can use to get quotes unique to you in just minutes. If you prefer to speak with someone about your quote, you can speak with one of our licensed agents at 833-255-4117 or

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The editorial content on Clovered’s website is meant to be informational material and should not be considered legal advice.

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