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5 Things You May Not Know About Car Insurance

Car insurance is important for accidents

Car insurance is important because life can be expensive.

As a way of trying to trim expenses today, many people are focused on getting the very cheapest auto insurance possible. And that is not a bad thing. But when that goal comes at the expense of having the right coverage, well…that’s not such a great thing. Understanding clearly what’s in your policy empowers you to make the right choices that may affect you down the road. So, in that spirit, we’d like to go over the top 5 things people have questions about.

1. What does liability / bodily injury cover for car insurance?

It’s broken down into 3 categories: per person, per occurrence, and property damage. Here in the state of Pennsylvania, those required minimums are:

  • Per person / $15,000
  • Per occurrence / $30,000
  • Property damage / $5,000

So, if you are carrying only the bare minimums and you hit the bumper of, . . . oh, let’s say a Mercedes Benz – good luck with that, because it simply won’t be enough coverage.

The three things it covers are: medical expenses, loss of wages, and pain and suffering. That means if somebody is in the hospital for more than a day, that coverage will be immediately maxed out. But you won’t be alone, because  one in three accidents involve people who don’t have enough insurance (or they don’t have insurance at all!)

2. What happens if you don’t have enough liability insurance?

Well, a good attorney is going to go after the deepest pockets in an accident and they’re going to find the money one way or another. And even if you don’t have assets, they may try and find money that you will potentially earn, which is called “wage garnishment”. Yes, they can actually garnish your wages for future earnings to pay off the debt that you’re responsible for. Remember, one of the goals with having the right insurance coverage is to make sure the insurance company pays and not you when accidents happen! So, make sure you have enough coverage.

3. What is medical payments coverage?

If you’re injured in an auto accident – regardless of who’s at fault – you will have medical payments. It should cover things like chiropractic, therapeutic massage, physical therapy, and co-pays and deductibles to coincide with your health insurance. Not all insurance companies cover chiropractic and massage therapy so check with your agent to make sure your insurance provider covers those things because in the event of an accident, you’ll most likely need those services.

4. Why do I need comprehensive coverage for car insurance?

Comprehensive claims do not go against your record, so make sure you get it! It covers things like theft, vandalism, malicious mischief, falling objects, storm, flood, fire and glass breakage (which is most common.) Try and estimate what the value of your vehicle is. Would you be able to that much out-of-pocket to repair or replace your vehicle if it were stolen or damaged in a non-vehicular accident? If you said no, then comprehensive coverage may be a smart investment.

The Insurance Information Institute suggests that you take the amount you’d pay in one year for comprehensive and collision coverage, and multiply that number by 10. Is your car worth less than that number? If you said yes, then comprehensive coverage might not be a cost-effective option for you. Your insurance agent will be able to review your options with you.

5. What’s the best way to buy Auto Insurance?

The best way to buy auto insurance is to go to an insurance agent. Unlike going straight to the actual insurance company’s website and buying it online, an agent lives in your area and knows you and your neighborhood which enables them to better know what your auto insurance needs are. They also shop for your insurance – sometimes from 30 or more different companies – and therefore get you the very BEST policy for a reasonable price. Plus, once you have your insurance, they will always be there to keep an eye on your policy and provide help when you need it.

Check out our Auto Insurance policy for more information. If you’re looking for an agent, give us a call or contact us today.