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Auto Insurance Basics Everyone Should Learn

If you drive a car, chances are you have experience with auto insurance. Nearly everyone is required to carry this insurance as 47 states mandate some form of coverage. However, many pay those premiums each month or quarter without fully understanding how auto insurance works. Before settling on just any old policy, it’s important to consider the kind of car you drive, your driving history and your financial situation. You want to have adequate coverage in the event of a bad accident or loss.

It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various coverage options offered by most insurance companies. Most motorists are familiar with liability coverage, which protects your personal finances if you injure someone or damage their property. Most states have minimum standards of liability coverage. However, just because your policy may meet state guidelines does not mean it is sufficient to cover any accident related injuries or damages. Many of these statutes were written 20 years ago or more and medical costs, along with property values, have increased significantly since those standards were created. Collision coverage helps pay for damages to your vehicle if it is involved in an accident, while comprehensive coverage can help pay for repairs to or the replacement of your auto if it is damaged or destroyed by other covered events. Most insurance companies offer all sorts of other coverage options on top of these three basic insurance functions.

The amount and type of insurance you should buy depends on several factors. Your primary goal should be to purchase the highest liability limits you can afford. If your vehicle is worth $2,000 or less, collision coverage is usually not worth the premium but comprehensive coverage is inexpensive and offers great coverages for the money. Most insurance companies also allow you to choose your own deductible: The amount you are responsible for covering in the event you file a claim. These can range anywhere from $100 to $1,000. The lower the deductible, the higher the premium.

The best way to identify your auto insurance needs and to find a policy to match is to contact a knowledgeable, independent insurance agent. Our experienced agents can assist you in finding a variety of quotes from a number of insurance providers, enabling you to choose a policy with the best coverage at the most affordable rates. Contact us today!  

Questions about a claim? Contact Janie Thomas, Claims Specialist, at 800-627-4441 or 706-629-4441.