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Texas liability coverage requirements to go up again

The minimum liability coverage Texas drivers must carry on their auto insurance will increase on January 1, 2011, under the state's financial responsibility law. The minimum limits for liability coverage were last raised in April 2008.

Texas law requires people who drive to be able to pay for the automobile accidents they cause, which most drivers do with auto insurance liability coverage.

The minimum coverage amount required by the state's financial responsibility law increased on April 1, 2008, to $25,000 for each injured person, up to a total of $50,000 per accident and $25,000 for property damage.

On January 1, 2011, the minimums will go up again to $30,000 for each injured person, up to a total of $60,000 per accident and $25,000 for property damage per accident.

Drivers will be required to comply with the new limits as their policies are issued or renewed on or after the effective dates, the state insurance department said.

Texans should be aware that driving without insurance can result in serious penalties. A first conviction will result in a fine between $175 and $350. The state now has an automated system to check license plates during traffic stops to detect drivers without insurance.

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