What is Auto Insurance
Auto insurance protects you and your family against financial loss if you have an at fault accident. It is a contract between you and the insurance company. You agree to pay the premium and the insurance company agrees to pay your covered losses as defined in the policy.
Auto insurance provides physical damage, liability, and medical coverage:
- Physical damage coverage pays for damage to or theft of your covered automobile
- Liability coverage pays for your legal responsibility to others for bodily injury or property damage
- Medical payments coverage pays the medical expenses of the policyholder and any of the passengers injured by the insured automobile, irrespective of who was responsible for the accident
An auto insurance policy is comprised of six different kinds of coverage. Most states require you to buy some, but not all, of these coverages. If you’re financing a car, your lender may also have requirements.
Most auto policies are for six months or a year. Your insurance company should notify you by mail when it’s time to renew the policy and to pay your premium.
Why Do You Need Auto Insurance
It’s really about protecting yourself financially.
- If you’re in an accident or your car is stolen, it costs money, often a lot of money, to fix or replace it.
- If you or any of your passengers are injured in an accident, medical costs can be extremely expensive.
- If you or your car is responsible for damage or injury to others, you may be sued for much more than you’re worth.
- Most states require you purchase at least a minimum amount of coverage.
Questions to Ask Your Agent
Your Independent Agent is an advocate for finding auto insurance that meets your specific needs. Here are a few things to consider as you prepare for a discussion:
- How much can you afford to pay if you are in an accident? (To keep premiums low you may want to have a higher deductible and be willing to pay for more repairs.)
- What is the insurance company’s level of service and ability to pay claims?
- What discounts are available? (Ask about good driver, multiple policy, and good student discounts.)
- What’s the procedure for filing and settling a claim? (Ask who to call and what happens after you file a claim.)