Do you know what your auto insurance coverage is? Do you know how much your limits are? If you do, you’re the exception. When I speak to groups and ask this question, usually less than 10 percent of the people raise their hands. The first step in optimizing your insurance coverage is to know what you already have.
Not all personal injury claims resulting from car accidents, but these accidents are by far the most common cause of injury claims. As a result, I spend a lot of time talking to people about auto accidents and auto insurance. Every state has some requirement for auto insurance. Because of this requirement, nearly everyone has some kind of insurance. However, I am continually surprised by how little people actually know about auto insurance. This blog series breaks down auto insurance into its most common components, explains what each coverage does, and advises you on the essential coverage you should make sure you have to protect yourself and your family.
The most common types of insurance coverage are a liability, uninsured or underinsured coverage, and personal injury protection (PIP). In addition, you can usually purchase comprehensive coverage, rental car coverage, roadside assistance, and many other options.
In Part 1 of this series, we discussed liability insurance. In Part 2 we discussed uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM). In Part 3 we took a look at personal injury protection (PIP) Now, in this final installment, let’s review some other coverages that might be available:
An insurance policy is nothing more than a contract between you and the insurance company. You are agreeing to pay your premium every month and to cooperate with the insurance company’s investigation when a claim is made, and the company is agreeing to pay for certain losses. In theory, you could negotiate any kind of coverage, but a few standard ones are good to consider:
· Comprehensive coverage takes care of minor losses such as cracked windshields, minor dents or scratches, and damage to accessories such as windshield wipers.
· Rental car coverage pays for a rental car when your car has been damaged, is undrivable, or is in the shop getting repaired.
· Roadside assistance coverage is provided by many insurers, and it will provide you with a tow truck, a jump start, or a can of gas when you are stranded. I personally prefer AAA for this service, but you may be able to get the same or comparable service through your insurance company.
There are many other kinds of coverages that you could get from your insurance company, and often your agent will not mention them to you until you ask. Take the time to inquire about every type of coverage that is available and decide for yourself what you need. Just remember, it is ultimately up to you to make sure you and your family have adequate coverage should the worst take place.
As always, if you have any questions about auto insurance or any aspect of the personal injury claims process, please check out our website or give us a call.