Insurance is essential for so many different needs and one kind that is certainly vital and in all 50 states is mandated by law is auto insurance. If this is your first time obtaining this insurance or if you are a long time driver shopping for a new policy, read on to learn the facts about car insurance.
What is Auto Insurance?
This kind of a policy is essentially an agreement between an insurance company and you in which you pay your premiums and, in return, you are provided with insurance coverage protection should an accident occur. The amount of the premium you pay for this coverage is determined by several factors, including your age and the number of years you’ve been driving, your driving record, the average miles you drive in a year, the kind of car you drive, your credit report, among other considerations. Car insurance policies also offer several kinds of coverage options too.
Again, as a result of state laws, automobile insurance is required for all who operate a motor vehicle, including cars, trucks, vans, etc., on any main road. Once upon a time car insurance was purely optional, but it is currently mandatory in all the states, although the limits required and the amounts mandated vary from state to state.
When you obtain an automobile insurance policy, you will usually pay monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly or annual premium payments. In exchange for your payments, you receive coverage, up to certain limits, for you and your vehicle. Typically you will have a deductible, which is the amount you first pay before the insurance company provides compensation. For example, if one has a $500 deductible with repairs that total $2,000, the insurance company pays $1500 for the repairs after your initial payment of $500.
The following types of coverage are generally offered:
Collision Coverage – If your car impacts another car or causes damage to property, this is what provides compensation for your own car’s repair.
Comprehensive Coverage – This is what protects you from hazards other than vehicles, like deer or birds, storm or hail damage, vandalism, theft, etc.
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage – This kind of coverage pays for lost income or for medical expenses for any passengers who are hurt in an accident in which you are the driver at fault.
Property Damage Liability Coverage – This pays for damages to that which you impact with your car, like another auto or a building.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists Coverage – This provides compensation for damages to you or your passengers that is caused by another uninsured or under insured driver.
Besides being required by law, auto insurance offers many benefits, such as compensation for repairs to your car, helping to pay medical bills and for providing protection against lawsuits when you’re embroiled in an at-fault car accident.