A car or truck is often your biggest asset aside from your home. Auto insurance protects against potentially crippling financial losses and the sheer inconvenience of being without transportation.
How can auto insurance protect you?
Use the yellow hot spots and explore how auto insurance can help protect against common risks.
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage
It’s easy to get distracted while driving. All it takes is an incoming text message, a fussy baby or a little spill of soda and your eyes are off the road long enough to crash into the slowing vehicle in front of you. As an owner/operator of the vehicle, you may be held financially responsible for any bodily injuries caused as a result of the accident.
Bodily injury liability covers your legal liability for a covered accident that involves injury to another person, up to the limit of liability you select. Purchase enough coverage to protect your assets should a claim be brought against you or if you are sued. You should also consider purchasing an excess liability policy which may provide additional limits of liability.
Property Damage Coverage
When involved in an auto accident, you and your family may be financially responsible for any damage caused by your vehicle to someone else’s property. Usually this means damage to someone else’s car, but it can really be any property damaged by your vehicle.
Property damage coverage protects you if your car damages someone else's property, such as another car, a fence or building front. When choosing your property damage liability limits, you should consider all of your assets, including your home and future earnings because if you don't have enough coverage to protect all of your assets, those assets could be at risk if you're liable for damages that exceed your coverage limit. Consider having a higher limit of liability coverage – it may help you avoid having to pay out-of-pocket after an at-fault accident.
Medical Payments Coverage
Depending on the severity of the injuries suffered in an automobile accident, whether caused by you or by the other vehicle, it’s not uncommon for healthcare costs to run into the thousands of dollars, with a large portion being out-of-pocket expenses not covered by your health care plan.
Medical payments coverage can help cover all reasonable medical expenses and funeral expenses of covered drivers and passengers after an accident, regardless of fault. In most states, it's an optional addition to your car insurance policy.
Uninsured / Underinsured Motorist Damage Coverage
What happens when the driver who hit you doesn't have enough liability coverage? Or, even worse, takes off? According to the Insurance Research Council, this happens more than you might expect. In fact, it is estimated that one in seven drivers go uninsured, leaving you to pay out-of-pocket for damages and medical expenses not covered by the other driver.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist damage coverage may compensate you for bodily injury and lost wages caused by an uninsured motorist, a hit-and-run driver, a driver whose automobile insurance company is insolvent or a driver who has not purchased enough coverage to pay for damages.
Physical Damage Coverage
Your automobile can be a fairly costly investment – one that is exposed to many potential losses caused by weather related events, theft and other circumstances that may be out of your control.
Physical damage coverage can protect your vehicle if it is damaged in an accident (collision coverage), is damaged by something other than a collision (comprehensive coverage) with a vehicle or object or if your vehicle is stolen. This coverage is optional if your vehicle is paid in full, but it is coverage you should consider if you want to fully protect your vehicle.
Transportation Expenses / Rental Coverage
When your vehicle is being repaired or replaced due to a covered loss, you may have to rent a vehicle to get you to and from your daily responsibilities without any interruption. Vehicle rental can get expensive, especially over an extended period of time.
Transportation expenses/rental coverage is an inexpensive option you can add to your auto insurance policy to pay for the cost to rent a temporary replacement vehicle or the cost of public or private transportation if your vehicle is ever in an accident. This coverage is available in a variety of daily limits.
Remember, not all car insurance is created equal. Some auto insurance policies only meet the state minimum requirements. Essentially that means your policy would only cover the damage you do to someone else’s car or property.
In Minnesota we also have a required coverage called “Personal Injury Protection.” This coverage will pay for medical expenses for you and other family members should you be injured in an accident, regardless of fault.
Your policy can also cover your car or truck if it is stolen, damaged or destroyed by fire, or if you were to collide with a deer. Many other coverages are also available in a personal auto policy and we’ll be glad to discuss all of them with you.
Talk with us and ensure you have the proper car insurance coverage in place with the right insurance company. Otherwise, you’re putting yourself, your family and others at risk.