Miss. Gov. Barbour Expected to Sign HB 722, Raise PIP Coverage to $25,000

March 28, 2005

Mississippi House Bill 722, a measure to increase motorists’ liability insurance coverage from $5,000 to $25,000 has been send by the House to Governor Haley Barbour for his signature.

“It’s just asking the public to have something that will cover minimal losses,” Rep. Gary Chism, R-Columbus, told the Picayune Item.

The bill would also increase from $10,000 to $25,000 the coverage needed to pay for injury or death of one person, and would increase from $20,000 to $50,000 for injury or death involving two or more people.

The old liability insurance coverage requirements are woefully inadequate, Chism said.

“Five-thousand dollars won’t even do a fender-bender,” said Chism, an insurance agent.

Opponents said the higher coverage requirements would drive up the costs of automobile insurance.

Mississippi drivers are required to have liability insurance. Motorists found without proof of insurance can be fined up to $1,000. However, that fine can be reduced to $100 or waived if drivers later show a judge they have the insurance.

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