Car Insurance Basics

Car Insurance Basics: What Does All This Stuff Mean?

Let’s face it. Most of us have never actually read our car insurance policy contract. Even if we did, there’s a pretty good chance we wouldn’t understand it. For those shopping for automobile insurance, determining what type of car insurance coverage you need and don’t need is tricky. Below are some of the common car insurance coverage options and what each means, plain and simple.

Comprehensive coverage

Similar to collision coverage, except it provides coverage for specific incidents other than collision (accidents with animals, hail damage and falling objects).

Property damage coverage

Car insurance companies will offer varying levels of property damage coverage in regards to how much protection you want in the event you cause an accident or loss. The insurance company will cover any property damage you cause up to the specified policy amount for damages to other vehicles or even fixed property. Be sure you have enough coverage here. If you cause damage above your coverage limits, you could be held personally responsible for paying the difference.

Medical Payments/Personal Injury Protection coverage

Some states require car insurance companies to cover medical bills as a result of any injuries. This coverage may take precedent over private health insurance you have.

Rental Coverage

If you purchase this coverage, your insurance company will cover the cost of a rental while your vehicle is in the shop or a total loss as a result of a claim. Every car insurance company has different levels of coverage.

Each state offers different options for car insurance. What is available in one state may not be available in the next state. It is always best to speak to a licensed professional in your state for clarification regarding which car insurance options are best for you.

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