What does auto insurance cover?
Auto insurance combines several types of coverage into one policy. Basically, through liability coverage, an auto insurance policy will protect you if you damage someone else’s property, such as their car, due to an accident, or if you are sued for causing bodily injury to someone else. Personal Injury Protection (commonly known as No-Fault coverage) pays for your and your passengers’ injuries incurred from an accident. Comprehensive and collision coverages pay for either damages to your car or if your car is stolen, vandalized, or other occurrences that are not considered collision. Other coverages include uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage which can pay you for serious injuries if you are involved in an accident with someone who either has no insurance or who has low limits of liability. There are other coverages available on a policy, and for a complete explanation of all the coverages that you can purchase, which ones make the most sense for you and what limits and deductibles are appropriate for your situation, please contact an Evans representative.
What factors can affect the cost of my auto insurance?
There are many factors that go into the rating of an auto insurance policy, and it is important to understand that it can be very difficult to compare prices with other people because there are so many different variables that affect each individual’s premiums. Some of these are the type of car you drive, where you live, how you use the car, your driving record, your credit score, your age and marital status, drivers of the car, and more. In addition, the limits of liability that you select, your deductibles, and which optional coverages you choose will make a difference in the premium you pay.
What is the difference between collision and comprehensive coverages?
Collision coverage can pay for damages caused by a collision with another vehicle, a collision with a stationary object, such as a tree or building, or a vehicle rollover. Collision coverage is subject to a deductible, which is the amount that you are responsible for in the event of a loss. Collision coverage protects you whether the loss is your fault or not.
Comprehensive coverage or Other than Collision coverage can pay for losses that are NOT collision. Examples of this are theft, vandalism, fire, hail, wind, falling objects such as a rock or tree, hitting an animal, and many glass losses. As with collision coverage, most comprehensive losses are subject to a deductible. An exception to this could be a glass breakage loss if you have full glass coverage.
What is No Fault coverage?
No-Fault coverage, or Personal Injury Protection, is a mandatory coverage in New York State and pays benefits for the cost of personal injuries resulting from an automobile accident. The term “no-fault” refers to the fact that the coverage applies to the injured party or parties regardless of who is at-fault in the accident. However, this does NOT mean that a driver will not be held responsible for the loss. No-Fault coverage only applies to injuries, not to damages to the car.
In addition to paying for medical expenses, such as doctor and hospital bills, No-Fault coverage will pay for a certain amount of work loss expense or loss of earnings, other reasonable and necessary expenses up to a specified amount per day, and a death benefit.
What are practical things I can do to reduce my auto insurance premium?
Although there are factors that affect your premium that may be difficult to change, such as where you live, drivers of the vehicles, your age or marital status, there are things that you can consider to lower your insurance cost. When purchasing a vehicle, be aware that the type of car does affect the comprehensive and collision rates. Your driving record, such as accidents and violations, can also affect your premium, so it is important that you and all drivers in your household understand the implications of bad driving habits.
Having more than one vehicle on the same policy can give you a multi-car discount, and many companies will give you a discount for having your auto and homeowners with the same company. Increasing your deductibles will save you money on your comprehensive and collision coverages, and if you have an older vehicle, it may be worth considering whether you need these coverages. Talk to your Evans representative who can help you with that decision. Taking an approved defensive driving course can also reduce your premium. There are also safety devices on vehicles, such as air bags, anti-theft devices, and anti-lock brakes that can discount premiums.
Contact one of our conveniently located Insurance offices, or call (716) 549-3500 for more information on any of our insurance products and services, or to set up an appointment to discuss your own unique situation.