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New Law Requiring Disclosure of Automobile Liability Insurance Limits

Oct 7th, 2019

As a personal injury attorney or an individual who has been hurt in a car accident that was not your fault, it is important to know what the automobile liability policy limits of the negligent driver are.

Melissa J Winthers Discusses Automobile Coverage Policy And New Colorado Law. This is because in Colorado, the minimum required liability policy limits are only $25,000.  One surgery or hospital visit can easily exhaust those limits.  It can be exceedingly frustrating for injured motorists when the at-fault automobile insurance company refuses to disclose their policy limits for several reasons.  First, without knowing the bodily injury limits, it is impossible to evaluate whether the injured motorist’s own uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage will be triggered.  Second, an insurer’s failure to disclose the liability policy limits often forces the filing of a premature lawsuit in order to compel the insurer to disclose the limits. This costs money unnecessarily and takes up court resources in an already clogged system.

Come January 1, 2020, a new law will go into effect that requires insurers to disclose automobile coverage policy limits in Colorado, whether personal or commercial, available to third-party claimants (someone who was hurt through no fault of their own by a negligent driver).  Under the new law, if an insurance company receives a request from a third-party claimant or her attorney, the insurer must provide within 30 days a statement that includes the name of the insurer, the name of each insured party, the limits of the liability coverage, and a complete copy of the insurance policy, including endorsements.

The law also requires insurers to disclose any excess or umbrella insurance that may be relevant to the claim.  The requirement to disclose excess or umbrella policies is very important as there have been many times in my career where I have repeatedly requested the applicable liability limits and the information that there is a one million dollar umbrella policy does not get “discovered” by the insurance company until well into litigation.

The penalty for failure to comply with the statutory disclosure requirements will result in a fine of one-hundred dollars per day and attorney’s fees and costs incurred by a claimant in enforcing the penalty.

Keywords: liability policy, policy limits, motorist coverage, auto accident law firm, uninsured motorist