Choosing the right kind of Car Insurance for your specific needs can get frustrating. Apart from the required Insurance coverage for California drivers, there are many different options to add to your Insurance plan, depending on what you want covered and what you can afford.
Where Should I Get Started?
An auto insurance policy can include several different kinds of coverage, besides those required by the State of California. The best tool for getting started will be your independent insurance agent, who will provide professional advice on the type and amount of car insurance coverage you should have to meet your individual needs and comply with the laws of your state. It is important to make sure you have a list of questions for your Agent, as well as a list of what you are looking to have covered under your Insurance Policy.
Here are the principal kinds of coverage that your policy may include (Please keep in mind that list is not exhaustive, and that some of the coverages listed below may be required by Law):
Liability coverage – Liability Coverage is the Insurance Policies that help cover costs and expenses associated with an accident when you are at fault with the accident. The money will go to the people you hit, but it won’t cover the people in your car.
Collision – This policy covers repairs to your car after an accident.
Comprehensive – This policy will cover your costs if your car is stolen or damaged outside of an accident.
Bodily Injury Liability (BIL) – This policy helps pay for the medical expenses accrued by others involved in a crash with you. This policy will cover the expenses of those not at fault. So your Bodily Injury Liability kicks in when you are involved in an accident and you’re at fault.
Property Damage Liability – This policy will pay for damage done to the other car involved in the accident, when you are at fault in the accident. Property Damage liability is sometimes referred to alongside your BIL as a third number, so a 20/50/10 liability package will cover up to $10,000 for damages done to the other car not at fault with the accident.
Personal Injury Protection – Covers you and your passengers’ medical expenses in the event of an accident. Personal injury Protection, depending on your coverage may cover lost wages from work, if you lose time at work because of your injuries related to the accident.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage – Helps cover costs accrued when you are involved in an accident with someone driving without Car Insurance or someone driving with a minimal coverage Insurance policy that is not enough to cover you and your passenger’s costs.
Medical Expenses – Covers the cost of medical care you or your passengers receive in the event of an accident.
How much insurance do you need for yourself?
It is not necessary to spend a lot of money on a Personal Injury Protection policy. You should be covered if you have health insurance and disability insurance through your employer or an Individual Health insurance Policy. If you are looking to save money it may be wise to just purchase the required minimum by California Law.
It is also important to realize that uninsured and under-insured Insurance coverage are not required by most states, but highly recommended. In most states, uninsured and under-insured Insurance coverage are relatively inexpensive, ranging from something like $400.00 a year for $100,000 worth of coverage.
Collision and comprehensive coverage are also worth having if you would want to repair or replace your car after an accident on your own or immediately after an accident without wanting to wait for the other parties Insurance. These policies may have a deductible, out of pocket expenses before coverage kicks in, and they pay out based on the current value of your car, not what you paid for your car.