What is Comprehensive Auto Insurance Coverage?

Comprehensive auto insurance is a type of insurance coverage that protects against physical damage on your car, and is often referred to as “other than collision” (OTC) coverage, or simply “Comp”. The comprehensive coverage of an auto insurance policy can be a little confusing – so let’s take a look and lay it out in an easy to understand fashion.

Auto insurance can be broken down into two general components – Liability coverage, and Physical Damage coverage. Liability, which is required in most states, is referred to as Bodily Injury Liability, and provides coverage in the event of bodily injury or death for which you are responsible. Physical damage coverage, on the other hand, covers the cost of damage repairs (minus the deductible) on your car that are incurred as a result of an act or event that is covered in the policy.

Within the Physical damage coverage component – there are two main types of coverage – collision and comprehensive. These are two distinct, separate forms of coverage. Collision covers damage to your car when your car is damaged in an accident. When your car collides with another object – or overturns or rolls – your collision coverage pays for the repairs. Colliding with an animal such as a deer is covered not in Collision – but is in Comprehensive. Comprehensive covers physical damage outside the realm of Collision.

Many people mistakenly interpret that the term “comprehensive coverage” to mean that they are covered for any sort of damage to their cars. This is not true. Comprehensive coverage only pays the cost of damages that occur as a result of a non-collision incident. If you do not have collision coverage, you end up paying for the expenses incurred in an accident. Also, drivers should be aware that comprehensive covers the cost of repairing or replacing the car only, and does not provide any restitution for personal items in the car that were damaged or stolen. If you have expensive stereo equipment in your car, for example, you will want to invest in a separate insurance policy that covers personal property. Additionally, Comprehensive also does not offer protection against damage caused by normal road use.

What Comprehensive Covers

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Riot
  • Hail, water, or flooding
  • Vandalism
  • Wind
  • Damage resulting from animal
  • Glass Breakage
  • Missiles or falling objects (the term missiles used here does not refer to the military term- instead refers to any flying or propelled object)

Comprehensive does not cover theft or vandalism caused by family members or employees. Some policies may offer an extension that covers you when you are driving a car other than your own (though it this extension normally has reduced coverage benefits). It’s important to read your policy carefully to learn what is covered and what is excluded.

Can you purchase only comprehensive and not collision? Some insurance companies will actually allow this is certain situations. Most insurance companies, however, do not allow you to purchase collision without comprehensive coverage.

Cost of Comprehensive Coverage
As with any component of auto insurance, cost is driven by the following factors; the age of the driver, the drivers experience, the value of the car, the area where the car will be driven, and the estimated annual mileage. Always compare the quotes of Auto Insurance companies online to find the lowest cost insurance that meets your needs.

Weighing the cost of the insurance coverage against the value of the vehicle will show if it is cost-effective to carry this coverage at all. Comprehensive and Collision coverage’s always have a deductible, which can be as cheap as $200 and as expensive as $1,500. A higher deductible equates to a lower insurance premium.

Who Needs Comprehensive Coverage?
Not required by any state – as states are more concerned about the liability coverage. However, if your car is either being financed or leased – the financing company will usually require physical damage coverage.

For older cars you may consider excluding collision and comprehensive coverage since coverage is normally limited to the cash value of the car. Comprehensive coverage is highly recommended in case your car is worth over $4000. You may also find it valuable if you believe your car is susceptible to theft.

Car Insurance Terms and Glossary

No car insurance resource would be complete without a comprehensive glossary of car insurance terms. We’ve compiled a list of terms and their definitions to better help you navigate the sometimes confusing world of insurance

Accident – This is an unexpected sudden event that causes property damage to an automobile or bodily injury to a person. The event may be an at-fault or not-at fault and it may be report or unreported. An accident involving two vehicles may be termed a collision.

Accident report form – This is the report filed by police, often called the police report, containing the important information regarding the vehicle collision. This report will include the names of all individuals involved, vehicles involved, property damaged and citations that were issued.

Adjuster – This is the person who will evaluate the actual loss reported on the policy after an accident or other incident. They will make the determination on how much will be paid on the auto insurance policy by the Insurer.

Agent – This is a licensed and trained individual who is authorized to sell and to service insurance policies for the auto insurance company.

At Fault – This is the amount that you, the policy holder, contributed or caused the auto collision. This determines which insurance agency pays which portion of the losses.

Auto Insurance Score – This is a score similar to credit score that evaluates the information in your consumer credit report. These scores are used when determining pricing for your auto insurance policy. Negative marks on your credit report can increase your auto insurance premiums. The use of this information to determine policy pricing does vary from state to state.

Automobile Insurance – This is a type of insurance policy that covers and protect against losses involving automobiles. Auto Insurance policies include a wide range of coverage’s depending on the policy holders needs. Liability for property damage and bodily injury, uninsured motorist, medical payments, comprehensive, and collision are some of the common coverage’s offered under an auto insurance policy.

Binder – This is a temporary short-term policy agreement put in place while a formal permanent policy is put into place or delivered.

Bodily Injury Liability – This is the section of an insurance policy that covers the cost to anyone you may injure. It can include lost wages and medical expenses.

Broker – This is a licensed individual who on your behalf sells and services various insurance policies.

Claim – This is a formal notice made to your insurance company that a loss has occurred which may be covered under the terms of the auto insurance policy.

Claims Adjuster – This person employed by the insurance agency will investigate and settle all claims and losses. A representative for the insurance agency to verify and ensure all parties involved with the loss, get compensated fairly and correctly.

Collision – The portion of the insurance policy that covers damage to your vehicle from hitting another object. Objects can include but are not limited to; another vehicle, a building, curbs, guard rail, tree, telephone pole or fence. A deductible will apply. Your insurance company will go after the other parties insurance policy for these cost should they be at fault.

Commission – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that is paid to the insurance agent for selling and servicing the policy on behalf of the company.

Comprehensive – This is a portion of the insurance policy that covers loss caused by anything other than a collision or running into another object. A deductible will apply. This includes but is not limited to vandalism, storm damage, fire, theft, etc.

Covered loss – This is the damage to yourself, other people or property or your vehicle that is covered under the auto insurance policy.

Declarations Page – This is the part of the insurance policy that includes the entire legal name of your insurance company, your full legal name, complete car information including vehicle identification numbers or VIN, policy information, policy number, deductible amounts. This page is usually the front page of the insurance policy.

Deductible Amount – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that is the amount the policy holder must pay up front before the Insurance Company contributes and is required to pay any benefits. This amount can be within a wide range in price and varies from approximately $100 – $1000. The larger amount you pay in a deductible the lower your normal monthly/yearly policy will cost. This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that would be applicable only to comprehensive or collision coverage.

Discount – This is a reduction in the overall cost of your insurance policy. Deductions can be given for a variety of different reasons including a good driving record, grades, age, marital status, specific features and safety equipment on the automobile.

Emergency Road Service – This is the part of an auto insurance policy that covers the cost of emergency services such as flat tires, keys locked in the car and towing services.

Endorsement – This is any written change that is made to the auto insurance policy that is adding or removing coverage on the policy.

Exclusion – This is the portion of the auto Insurance policy that includes any provision including people, places or things that are not covered under the insurance policy.

First Party – This is the policyholder, the insured in an insurance policy.

Gap Insurance – This is a type of auto insurance provided to people who lease or own a vehicle that is worth less than the amount of the loan. Gap auto Insurance will cover the amount between the actual cash value of the vehicle and the amount left on loan should the care be stolen or destroyed.

High-Risk Driver – If you have a variety of negative marks on your insurance record including driving under the Influences, several traffic violations, etc. you may be labeled as a risk to the insurance company. This will increase your insurance policy or may make you ineligible for coverage.

Insured – The policyholder (s) who are covered by the policy benefits in case of a loss or accident.

Insurer – Is the Auto Insurance company who promises to pay the policy holder in case of loss or accident.

Liability insurance – This part of an auto insurance policy which legally covers the damage and injuries you cause to other drivers and their vehicles when you are at fault in an accident. If you are sued and taken to court, liability coverage will apply to your legal costs that you incur. Most states will require drivers to carry some variation of liability coverage Insurance and this amount will vary state by state.

Limits – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that explains and lists the monetary limits the insurance company will pay out. In the situation you reach these limits the policy holder will be responsible for all other expenses.

Medical Payments Coverage – This is the portion of an auto insurance policy that pays for medical expenses and lost wages to you and any passengers in your vehicle after an accident. It is also known as personal injury protection or PIP.

Motor Vehicle Report – The motor vehicle report or MVR is a record issued by the state in which the policy holder resides in that will list the licensing status, any traffic violations, various suspensions and./ or refractions on your record. This is one of the tools used in determining the premium prices offered by the insurance agency. This is also used to determine the probability of you having a claim during your policy period.

No-Fault Insurance – If you reside within a state with no-fault insurance laws and regulations, your auto insurance policy pays for your injuries no matter who caused the accident. No-fault insurance states include; Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Utah and Washington, DC..

Non-Renewal – This is the termination of an auto insurance policy on the given expiration date. All coverage will cease as of this date and insurer will be released of promised coverage.

Personal Property Liability – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that covers any damage or loss you cause to another person’s personal property.

Personal Injury Protection or PIP – This portion of an auto insurance policy pays for any lost wages or medical expenses to you and any passengers in your vehicle following an accident. PIP is also known as medical payments coverage.

Premium – This is the amount charged to you monthly, yearly or any other duration agreed upon by insurance company and policy holder and paid directly to the auto insurance company. A premium is based on the type and amount of coverage you choose for your vehicle(s) and yourself. Other factors that will affect your insurance premium prices include your age, marital status, you’re driving and credit report, the type of car you drive and whether you live in an urban or rural area. Premiums vary by insurance company and the location you live.

Quotation – This is the amount or estimated amount the insurance will cost based on the information provided to the agent, broker or auto insurance company.

Rescission.- This is the cancellation of the insurance policy dated back to its effective date. This would result in the full premium that was charged being returned.

Rental Reimbursement – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that covers the cost of an automobile rental of similar size should the covered vehicle be in repair from a reported incident.

Replacement Cost – This is the amount of money it would cost to replace a lost or damaged item at it is actually new replacement value. This monetary amount would be based on a new identical item in the current local market.

Salvage – This is the auto insurance policy holders property that is turned over tot eh insurance agency in a loss final settlement. Insurance companies will sell the salvage property in hopes to recoup some of its monetary loss due to the loss and settlement.

Second Party – this is the actual insurance company in the auto insurance policy.

Surcharge – This is the amount added to your auto insurance policy premium after a traffic violation or an accident in which you were found to be at fault.

Third Party – This is another person other than the policy holder and auto insurance company who has faced a loss and may be able to collect and be compensated on behalf of the policy holder’s negligence.

Total Loss – This is complete destruction to the insured property of a policy holder. It has been determined that it would be a great sum of money to repair the item rather than replace the insured piece of property to its state prior to the loss.

Towing Coverage – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy that covers a specified amount for towing services and related labor costs.

Under insured Driver – This is the portion of an auto insurance policy which covers injuries to you caused by a driver without enough insurance to pay for the medical expenses you have incurred from the accident. This is portion of the policy can vary state by state as some states include damage to the car in this section.

Uninsured Driver or Motorist – This is the portion of the auto insurance policy which covers injuries to you caused by a driver who was without liability insurance at the time of the accident. Uninsured driver or motorist coverage comes in two different sections; uninsured motorist bodily injury and uninsured motorist property damage. Uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage covers the injuries to you or any passenger in your vehicle when there is an accident with an uninsured driver. Uninsured motorist property damage coverage covers the cost for the property damage to your vehicle when there is an accident with an identified uninsured driver. Uninsured driver or motorist coverage must be offered when you purchase the required liability coverage for your vehicle. You must sign a declination waiver if you decline Uninsured driver or motorist coverage. The majority of states require drivers to carry some form of uninsured motorist coverage. Some states include damages to your car in this coverage.

Vehicle Identification Number or VIN – A VIN is a 17 letter and number combination that is the identification of the specific vehicle. It will identify the make, modem and year of the automobile. This number is typically located on the driver’s side window on the dash. It can also be found on the vehicles registration and title.

Affordable Medical Insurance Coverage – Avoid a TV Medical Health Insurance Policy Purchase

Affordable medical insurance coverage is something all Americans want. TV advertises a medical health insurance policy that sounds so enticing and affordable it is hard not to respond. Correct custom medical insurance coverage is such a difference from just a plain medical health insurance policy purchase. Examine why.

Divorces, jobs, and alternative life styles cause millions of Americans to be afraid of not obtaining affordable medical insurance coverage. Afraid not only of obtaining an illness, or getting involved in an accident, but also of something that often outlasts the illness or accident. That of course is the medical costs of treatment. While some unfortunately have no guilt of never paying back the medical expenses incurred, the majority of Americans do.

With auto insurance you can purchase coverage to fix your car after your is auto is already wrecked. Nor will it cover items like a broken windshield, if the windshield was broken before coverage went into effect. Fortunately, states have laws requiring you to purchase at least minimal coverage if you are going to drive your car. In addition, there are hordes of small town police and state troopers ready to write a series of tickets if you do not follow tons of rules and regulations, plus drop or go without insurance coverage.

Your state will not ticket or fine you if you do not have medical insurance coverage. However, if you feel it is for your benefit to obtain medical health insurance, there are hundreds of options from which to choose. There also is a wide range of prices for you. One 40 year old woman pays over $600 a month for coverage. Another 41-year-old woman gets a policy that is around $200 a month or less. A proposed incentive savings of $4,800 annually that is hard to not accept if an uncovered adult is financially strapped.

Using a current example, each woman has unexpected critical pains and rushes to the hospital. The diagnoses involves minor surgery, which requires 5 days as an inpatient and calls for specialist follow-up and outpatient care for three months. The total bill equates to $12,000 for the hospital and $3,000 for outpatient care. This is just for one occurrence. (personally, I have been an inpatient for four occurrences twice during the previous 7 years, and totals 18 in this time span).

MAJOR MEDICAL COVERAGE – The 40 year old woman paying $600 monthly either with a health insurer, HMO- Health Maintenance Organization, or PPO- Preferred provider organization. Her plan probably has a zero deductible, $10 doctor co-pay, $2,000,000 or more limits, and a $3 to $10 co-pay for prescriptions. It likely had a no pre-existing condition clause, or at worst pre-existing conditions covered after 90 days. Out of this $15,000 medical occurrence, she probably paid for a few items. Her telephone and TV in her hospital room, $60 for 6 doctor co-pays for after treatment, and say $15 monthly for 3 prescriptions to take over the next 12 months. These three prescriptions alone, without coverage, could cost $250 monthly.

MAJOR HOSPITAL COVERAGE – This 41-year-old woman pays $200 month for the major hospital coverage policy she bought as a result of a television commercial Unlike major medical plans, major hospital is usually an indemnity plan. Indemnity meaning reimbursing a certain total amount or percentage for policy covered conditions. Under an indemnity plan even if you use an extreme amount of benefits, it is rare than the amount paid out equals your yearly payments. So paying $2,400 annually and leaving the insurance company 25% or more for overhead, profit, and claims processing would equal around $1,800.

MORE MAJOR PROBLEMS – The woman with medical insurance coverage for major hospital could have $8,200 of hospital costs, $3,000 for outpatient care, and $3,000 for prescriptions. That equals $14,200 just for that, even though she had purchased and paid for a medical policy. What about other illness or accidents that could occur in the next 12 months should she change to another affordable medical insurance policy with major hospital benefits. It will often exclude her pre-existing condition permanently. She is bleeding financially for her poor choice. The saying is “don’t get burned again.”

PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE – All is not lost. Although this woman, most newer agents, plus those representative not helping loads of people with their medical coverage think all is lost. The resident state often has up to 300 companies, HMOs, and PPOs offering either major hospital or major medical coverage. Unfortunately, only 50 to 70 of these may offer a high deductible major medical insurance policy. Way less than 10% of life/health agent have ever sold even one. Less than 20% of agents could on the spot answer what a HSA is, let alone explain benefits of eligibility. Fewer than 5% have helped a person enact one.

THE SOLUTION – no one can predict new illness and accidents, when they will occur, or how much they will cost. Even though it has been many, many moons since I sold health insurance, I can put on my free advisor hat. If you can afford it, purchase medical insurance coverage labeled as a major medical plan OR a high deductible major medical plan with a government approved HSA, Health Savings Account. If this not affordable, avoid the insurance company money making major hospital plan. Instead, find a smart insurance agent, which will offer you a major medical plan with a $2,500 to $5,000 deductible, which will very affordable.

Unlike doctors and pharmacists, a hospital will work out a plan with you to pay an unpaid balance. $50 a week would pay off a $2,500 balance in a year. Something both of you might find realistic. Read additional articles like mine on topics like major medical, high deductible, or Government endorsed Health Saving Accounts. Alternatively, search the internet for more information. Either way, do not purchase “affordable medical insurance coverage” until you know ALL the solutions.

Review of Car Insurance Coverage For Uninsured and Under-Insured Motorists in the US

Car insurance coverage comparison is becoming very popular in USA. The economic downturn is bringing about unexpected changes in most walks of life and insurance is one of them. As per the Insurance Information Institute one driver out of every seven in the US is believed to have no automobile insurance. This would mean that 14% of the drivers are uninsured and only 86% drivers are insured. The drivers who are going for insurance have to face broad repercussions which arise out of uninsured motorist coverage. Car insurance comparison becomes very important for those who are taking insurance to verify whether they have taken the uninsured motorist and under insured motorist.

The uninsured motorist and under-insured motorist insurance is separate, although in many states they can or must be purchased together. They are also better known in abbreviated form as UM or UIM. It is natural that you would not think about or know exactly what the uninsured or under insured motorist indemnity is, unless you fall into such a situation. If you have opted for uninsured motorist than this will pay you for any loss or damage you may incur when you have a hit-and – run accident or when you collide with an uninsured motorist. A motorist can be uninsured when he has no insurance coverage, or whose claim the insurance company denied or was not able to financially meet with the obligations of loss. The uninsured motorist indemnity will also protect you if you are hit by a car as a pedestrian.

The under-insured motorist coverage pays you for any loss or damage when the motorist with whom you have collided is under-insured. The motorist in this case is insured but his limits of insurance are lower than the actual loss you have sustained. These coverages will pay you and your passengers for any bodily injuries are caused when the under-insured motorist or uninsured motorist is legally liable for this. In certain states the coverage for property damage is also paid under this coverage. Both these insurance pay you for your medical bills, reimburse for the lost wages if you miss work and you can also seek redress for pain and suffering resulting from the crash.

In 12 states the no fault insurance laws are prevalent. The no-fault insurance coverage is very similar to the uninsured motorist coverage. No-fault coverage gives certain compensation when you are not at fault and the driver at fault is uninsured. You can collect the benefits from your own insurance companies. Nevertheless, in the states where no-fault law prevails, going for uninsured motorist coverage is cost effective and beneficial since it provides an additional layer of financial support. Accidents can turn out to be more ghastly or long lasting than what they seem at first.

Only five of the states that insist their drivers carry Uninsured Motorist also mandate the purchase of this coverage; they are: Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, North Carolina and Vermont. If you live in any state other than those that have compulsory coverage, a prudent person like you should go for car insurance coverage and buy under-insured and uninsured motorist coverage. The cost for this car insurance coverage of uninsured motorist is quite nominal. This is a very positive factor to consider when taking this coverage. With a little extra cost you can save yourself from any financial problems at a later date. In these economic times if would serve you since many drivers are either uninsured or under-insured.

You should compare car insurance coverage and if you do not have this coverage you can seek to take this coverage. Compare car insurance quote for the best coverage and rates. It always pays you to be alert and make informed decisions when it comes to car insurance.