Oregon law requires every vehicle to be covered by auto insurance. Nevertheless, millions of dollars in damage is caused each year by uninsured drivers. This includes damage to vehicles and medical care for those injured in accidents.
Oregon's mandatory-insurance law requires that drivers have at least these coverages:
Bodily injury (BI) liability
$25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury to others.
Property damage (PD) liability
$20,000 per accident for damage to the property of others.
Personal injury protection (PIP)
PIP is Oregon's version of no-fault insurance. It allows you and your passengers, regardless of who caused an accident, to have insurance coverage for "reasonable and necessary" medical, dental, hospital, surgical, ambulance, and prosthetic services incurred within one year after the date of an injury up to a maximum of $15,000. In Oregon, minimum PIP benefits include limited coverage for loss of earnings, funeral expenses, essential services, and child care.
Medical services: Treatment is considered reasonable and necessary unless a provider receives a denial notice within 60 calendar days of claim notice. After that, the burden of proving that treatment was not reasonable and necessary is on the insurance company.
Loss of earnings: This benefit is available if your injury prevents you from returning to work. It begins on the 14th day of your disability. You receive up to 70 percent of wages up to a maximum benefit of $3,000 a month for 52 weeks.
Essential services: If you are not employed, you are entitled to reimbursement of reasonably incurred expenses for the essential services that you would normally perform. You will receive up to $30 a day for up to 52 weeks. This benefit begins on the 14th day of disability.
Funeral expenses: You will be paid for reasonable and necessary funeral expenses within one year of the date of injury up to a maximum benefit of $5,000. Oregon law and your insurance policy allow PIP benefit disputes to be resolved by arbitration as long as both parties agree at the time of the dispute. Know your PIP limit. Review this coverage carefully and consider raising your limit.
Uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI) and underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage
$25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury to you and your passengers caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. UMBI and UIM coverage require your insurance company to pay all expenses that would normally be paid by the other person's company if you are hurt by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. Consider increasing this coverage on your policy, because an uninsured or underinsured motorist probably cannot compensate you for your losses.
These are the minimum coverages required by Oregon law, not levels of coverage recommended by the Insurance Division.
Proof of insurance
Oregon law requires drivers to carry proof of liability insurance. The law also requires your insurance company to send you an insurance card that shows the effective date and expiration date of your policy. Keep this card in your vehicle at all times. Driving without liability insurance could result in fines, suspension of driving privileges, and impounding of your vehicle. If a judge convicts you of driving uninsured, you will have to file proof of financial responsibility with the Driver and Motor Vehicle Services (DMV) for three years or face suspension of your license. This is in addition to any fines you must pay.