Does Georgia Car Insurance Cover Hurricane Damage?
Hurricane season can be a troubling time for vehicle owners in Georgia. The National Weather Service states that between June 1st and November 30th there is a greater chance of residents on the Atlantic coast experiencing high winds and stormy weather. Turbulent weather is sometimes associated with falling branches, flying objects, hail, and flooding, which can do some serious damage to an automobile. Before storms have the chance to reach the Peach State it’s usually a good idea for motorists to ensure that their automobiles are insured against these kinds of damages. If not, drivers may want to consider adding additional coverage to avoid potentially expensive repairs. To prepare for automobile harm commonly associated with hurricanes drivers may want to consider adding comprehensive coverage, which is also commonly referred to as “other than collision” coverage.
The amount of coverage that is required by the state does not include damages that may be caused to a motorist’s own vehicle. The most basic Georgia auto insurance policy available only includes automobile liability with limits of 25/50/25 to cover damages or injuries the policyholder may be liable for. To cover extra expenses, drivers typically have to contact their insurer and include additions to their policy. While this typically results in higher premiums, the additional vehicle protection is oftentimes worth the price increase.
With comprehensive protection added to a policy, a motorist’s insurer is likely to cover many damages that are not associated with a collision. This typically includes vehicle damage caused by flooding, falling objects, fire, hail, or wind damage. This additional protection also typically covers theft and vandalism as well. When a claim is filed, the insurer will either pay to repair the covered vehicle or compensate the owner up to the value of the insured automobile, minus the deductible. This also means, however, that insuring an older car may not justify this additional coverage if its value is particularly low. For example, if a vehicle worth less than $2,000, the policyholder may not receive very much money from their insurer depending on the deductible they have chosen, which commonly ranges from $500 to $1,000.
To reduce one’s premium, but still maintain cheap car insurance with additional coverage, motorists may want to consider adjusting their deductible. By choosing a higher deductible a policyholder may be able to reduce coverage costs, but may have to pay more out-of-pocket in the event of an accident. Conversely, choosing a lower deductible will usually result in higher premiums, but the motorist in question is likely to pay less out-of-pocket after filing a claim. Because the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) urges GA residents to prepare themselves for potentially hazardous weather, it may be a good idea for residents to contact their insurer to find out about any additional coverage that may be helpful in stormy weather, and to find out about any additional ways to help lower rates as well.