Choosing Auto Insurance Coverage
What's the recommended auto insurance coverage?
The recommended coverage is one that is affordable and protects an insured's investment in the value of owned autos, pays medical expenses when injuries occur, and covers an insured's legal liability as a result of automobile accidents.
- Personal bodily injuries—The best way to protect against the injuries is to purchase or obtain through an employer a medical or health insurance policy. Auto insurance policies usually do not provide much medical coverage for the policyholders—for example, $5,000 max for the policyholder. This not to be confused with liability coverage, which provides bodily injury coverage (up to the policy limits) for others' injuries that the policyholder is found liable for in an automobile accident. Keep in mind that drivers may suffer injuries caused by uninsured or underinsured motorists. In that case, consider an uninsured motorist policy for increased protection in situations such as being hit by a driver who has no active policy.
- Liabilities—In order for policyholders to be protected financially in cases where they are found liable, they will have to purchase liability protection as described above with suitable limits. Keep in mind that drivers may be able to raise the coverage limits for a small additional premium.
- Property damage or theft to the insured vehicle—Consider purchasing comprehensive and collision to protect against theft, vandalism, accidents, and other damages to the insured car from a variety of perils.
- Transportation problems—When a vehicle is involved in an accident and inoperable or is being repaired, having rental car coverage can help with the costs associated with renting an automobile.
Study the following to help answer the question: "What type of coverage do I need?"
Liability policies are required by most states' laws for all registered autos; however, the minimum required liability limits depend on each state's laws. For example, California requires that a liability policy includes a minimum of $15,000 of bodily injury coverage per person, $30,000 bodily injury coverage per accident, and $5,000 of property damage coverage per accident. This is abbreviated as 15/30/5.
Keep in mind that the minimum requirements may satisfy state laws, but they may not be suitable for some peoples' needs. Consumers must be aware that any crash-related injury or property damage in excess of the liability limits may not be covered and may leave the at-fault driver responsible. Raising liability limits can help motorists protect their assets against lawsuits.
Keep in mind that drivers can request higher limits such as:
$15,000 bodily injury coverage per person / $30,000 bodily injury coverage per accident and
$10,000 property damage (15/30/10)
$100,000 bodily injury per person / $300,000 bodily injury per accident and
$50,000 property damage (100/300/50)
or anywhere in between. If shoppers are still unsure, they can feel free to contact a licensed agent for an auto insurance coverage consultation. (877) 229-6919
Learn more about Liability Coverage
Medical Payments Coverage
The medical payments portion of a car insurance policy is designed to pay some of the medical costs that may result from an accident such as medical bills and/or funeral expenses, up to the policy limit.
Most automobile policies do not provide large amounts of medical payments since most people carry health insurance either purchased privately or provided through their work.
Most medical payments policies provide protection in the range of $500 to $5,000. The cost for this coverage in California may be in the range of $8 per month.
Learn more about Medical Payments Coverage
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Uninsured motorist coverage insures not only against the uninsured motorist but also against the under insured motorist. Uninsured motorist is optional in some states and mandatory in others; however, it is recommended that it be added to a policy in the best interest of the insured. The limits can vary, but they usually cannot exceed your liability limits.
Cost for this protection may be fairly inexpensive and is a good idea to quote for comparison purposes.
Learn more about Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Comprehensive and Collision Coverage
If drivers want coverage to vehicles in case of theft, fire, vandalism, collision with animals, windstorms, flying objects, hail, broken windows, and at-fault auto accidents, then they likely want comprehensive and collision coverage.
If a vehicle is financed, the finance company may require comprehensive and collision coverage.
Cost for this varies depending on the vehicle. Some vehicle makes may have a higher replacement cost, which may lead to higher premiums.
Learn more about Comprehensive and Collision and about choosing auto insurance deductibles
Rental Car Coverage
Most insurers offer rental car reimbursement. Some companies offer rental reimbursement for as little as $2 per month. There are limitations as to how much money per day they will reimburse and how many consecutive days they will provide compensation for. This is fairly inexpensive; feel free to quote it.
Learn more about Rental Car Coverage
Who wants to be stuck in the middle of the road with no one to assist them? Roadside assistance can range from $30-$100 per year. It will be worth it in case of breakdown, lockout, flat tire, etc.
Learn more about Roadside Assistance