What Are the Benefits of Optional South Dakota Auto Insurance?

Map of South DakotaApart from the automobile coverage that is mandatory in South Dakota, there are also additional forms of protection that can benefit many motorists. Liability insurance and uninsured/underinsured motorist protection are required, but they can only cover a limited range of damages. Purchasing additional protection can help drivers be better prepared for a wider variety of accident-related expenses.

Optional Coverage for Medical Costs

Adding medical payment coverage (med-pay) to a South Dakota car insurance policy can help policyholders pay for many of their own medical costs that may follow an accident. The cost of health care and emergency procedures can be very expensive, especially for motorists who are hospitalized for multiple days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the average cost of hospitalization for a fractured arm was over $14,000 in 2005. And more serious injuries can become increasingly expensive.

Motorists with med-pay can have many of their medical costs or funeral expenses covered by this addition. The benefit of having many funeral expenses covered can be especially helpful after a tragic accident. The Federal Trade Commission estimates that the average cost of a funeral is roughly $6,000, but that sum can easily climb to over $10,000. Apart from the policyholder, med-pay also covers others who are injured or killed while riding in or driving the policyholder's vehicle.

Optional Protection for Vehicle-Related Expenses

The SD Department of Public Safety recorded over 16,000 car crashes in 2010. As a result of those accidents, many cars had to be repaired. For motorists with no other means of transportation, this usually means they have to rent a vehicle while their car is in the shop. The cost of renting a car fluctuates, and for a motorist with a long daily commute, the costs associated with maintaining a rented car can quickly add up. Adding rental reimbursement coverage to a policy can cover many of these expenses.

Circular South Dakota state flagAdditional forms of protection, such as roadside assistance or comprehensive and collision coverage can also be beneficial after an accident or in an emergency. Getting stranded on the side of the road or paying for a tow truck out of pocket can be expensive without additional coverage. Many motorists are required by their lender to carry comprehensive and collision coverage, but those who are not are encouraged to consider adding them to protect against damages to their own vehicle.

Including additional protection likely will increase the cost of a policy. South Dakota motorists are encouraged to research the types of coverage that are available and to choose the additions that will be the most beneficial. Finding affordable auto insurance that includes an adequate amount of protection involves shopping around and comparing options.