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Auto Insurance Information
What is auto insurance?
Auto insurance protects you against financial loss if you have an accident. It is a contract between you and the insurance company. You agree to pay the premium and the insurance company agrees to pay your losses as defined in your policy.
Auto insurance provides property, liability and medical coverage:
- Property coverage pays for damage to or theft of your car.
- Liability coverage pays for your legal responsibility to others for bodily injury or property damage.
- Medical coverage pays for the cost of treating injuries, rehabilitation and sometimes lost wages and funeral expenses.
An auto insurance policy is comprised of six different kinds of coverage. Most states require you to buy some, but not all, of these coverages. If you're financing a car, your lender may also have requirements.
Most auto policies are for six months or a year. Your insurance company should notify you by mail when it's time to renew the policy and to pay your premium.
Why do you need auto insurance?
It's really all about protecting yourself financially.
- If you're in an accident or your car is stolen, it costs money, often a lot of money, to fix or replace it.
- If you or any passengers are injured in an accident, medical costs can be extremely expensive.
- If you or your car is responsible for damage or injury to others, you may be sued for much more than you're worth.
- Not only is having insurance a prudent financial decision, many states require you to have at least some coverage.
Questions to ask your agent
Your Independent Agent is an advocate for finding auto insurance that meets your specific needs. Here are a few things to consider as you prepare for the discussion:
Common Auto Insurance Questions:
- How much can you afford to pay if you get in an accident? (To keep premiums low you may want to have a higher deductible and be willing to pay more for repairs.)
- What is the insurance company's level of service and ability to pay claims?
- What discounts are available? (Ask about good driver, multiple policy and student discounts.)
- What's the procedure for filing and settling a claim? (Ask who to call and what happens after you file a claim.)
By purchasing the right coverage, auto insurance is a paid agreement between the insured and the insurer that, in the event of an accident, the insurer will step in and help cover some of, if not, all of the costs resulting from a damaged vehicle depending on the type of coverage. In turn, drivers can feel some type of safety knowing that, if an accident occurs, they will be provided financial assistance.
Vehicle damage can get very expensive if an accident is severe enough, and auto insurance is a guarantee that you will be assisted in covering those expenses. In the event of an accident, you would file a claim against your policy for aspects of the accident you are responsible for and your insurance will then give you financial assistance in covering some of the costs.
It’s important to understand that having quality coverage will limit your out-of-pocket costs, rather than digging yourself into significant financial debt.
The average auto insurance policy can offer numerous benefits, including:
Comprehensive insurance: This coverage pays for damage from non-accident mishaps, such as weather damage, fires, theft, vandalism or similar accidents.
Medical payments coverage/Personal Injury Protection: If you get hurt in an accident, this coverage can pay for your medical bills. It sometimes will cover other losses, like lost income.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance: This insures you against damage caused by someone else who doesn’t have appropriate liability coverage. If you are the victim of a hit-and-run, for example, then this coverage can pay for your car’s damage.
Plus, to further customize your benefits, you can add countless perks into qualifying policies, including:
The required coverages are:
Medical Benefits (No-Fault): $5,000
Bodily Injury Liability: $15,000 per person/$30,000 per accident
Property Damage Liability: $5,000
Some companies offer a single limit of $35,000 which meets the bodily injury liability and property damage liability minimum requirements.
Limited or Full Tort — You can choose to have full or limited tort coverage. Limited tort coverage offers you a savings on your premiums. You are still able to recover all out-of-pocket medical and other expenses; however, you are not able to recover certain damages - such as payments for pain and suffering - unless the injuries meet one of the exceptions to limited tort as defined in Act 6 of 1990, title 75, section 1705 (d). With full tort coverage selection, you retain unrestricted rights to bring suit against the negligent party."
Depending on if you have financed your vehicle, you also may be required to other types of insurance such as collision, comprehensive and gap coverage.
Having more than just the bare minimum auto insurance coverage is essential. Our knowledgeable, experienced agents will help you determine the best policy.
Numerous factors can influence the cost of your auto policy, including:
Your chosen coverage limits
The value of your vehicle
Your driving accident history
Your history of claims on other auto policies
There is a possibility that drivers might pay different prices for the same type of coverage, but we will make certain to use our resources and find you the best policy for the most reasonable price. Do not sell yourself short when it comes to auto insurance.