The Insurance Industry is one of the most complicated industries in existence, the Auto Insurance industry is just as bad or worse than other types of insurance industries including life, health and homeowners insurance just to name a few. Unfortunately, because of all of the rules and regulations, most consumers do not receive all available options from the auto insurance industry experts. If you have ever asked yourself, “What type of car insurance should I get?”, then the options listed below are for you.
This type of coverage is the most important. This protects your assets. Never carry the state minimum liability coverage which in California is $15,000. This will never protect your assets. Do not believe in the mistaken assumption that you are a careful driver and a car accident will not happen to you. It happens to everyone eventually. None of us are immune to an accident. The law firm of Nadrich & Cohen has handled thousands of auto accident claims over the years throughout California, including Santa Rosa, Palm Springs, Tracy, San Bernardino, Long Beach and more.
Through our experience, we have seen time and again the importance of purchasing the correct auto insurance coverage to protect you and your family. We have attempted to provide you with a basic guide to auto insurance coverage. If you have any questions regarding your insurance coverage and an auto accident, just call our office to speak with one of our car accident intake specialists. The consultation is free. 1-800-718-4658.
Liability coverage that includes bodily injury and property damage is the most expensive coverage in an auto insurance policy.
The two parts of liability coverage are bodily injury and property damage. Bodily injury protects you against someone who is injured because of an accident which you may have caused. This also extends to someone who, with your permission, used one of your cars. This is called a permissive driver. The coverage includes another person injured in another car, pedestrian, bicycle or even a passenger in your car. It will not cover someone in your households such as your wife or children.
It is our experience that you should have a minimum of $100,000 bodily injury and property damage liability. Please should have at least that amount. If you have any assets (own a home or business) you should have a minimum of $500,000 or $1,000,000 liability insurance. Check with your insurance agent or company. Property damage includes, for example, the cost of hitting a car or a sign or a commercial building, etc. These costs are surprisingly very expensive. They would be covered under the property damage liability coverage. You need it. I recommend bodily injury coverage of $250,000 per person and/or $500,000 per accident. However, if you own real estate you should have $1,000,000 minimum in an umbrella or excess policy. That protects you even more.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Uninsured and underinsured coverage protects you and your passengers who were in an accident caused by a driver who has no insurance or an inadequate amount of insurance to cover you and/or your passengers’ injuries. This is very important as you are protecting yourself. Coverage does not include any physical damage, just injury. Most of the time you are also included if you are a passenger or riding a bicycle (it includes anyone in your family or who is called a named insured.)
Again, uninsured and/or under-insured insurance covers you and your family for injuries when the other side (the at-fault party) does not have sufficient insurance. What happens is that your insurance company is liable (remember, you pay for this so it is not a gift from them to you) to cover your medical expenses, time off from work, pain and suffering, death, disability or other. We call this general damages. You should have a minimum of $100,000 / $300,000 Uninsured Motorist coverage. This means $100,000 per accident and $300,000 for everyone involved in one claim or one accident. Make sure you have it. We have had untold examples of hard workers who did not have this coverage and did not, therefore, obtain additional compensation for themselves, even though they could afford the insurance
Medical coverage means that the insurance company will pay for medical expenses for any injuries caused by an auto accident regardless of who is at fault. This is also called “Med Pay” or medical payment coverage. We recommend it. Remember, almost all insurance companies, if they pay out on the medical coverage, can, under the insurance agreement be reimbursed if you obtain a recovery from a third party.
Auto collision coverage
This insurance covers your damage vehicle caused by an accident. Collision damage isn’t limited to driving. Even if your car is parked and damaged it is covered.
This covers your car for everything other than a collision such as fire, theft, vandalism, wind, hail, etc. You should purchase comprehensive coverage. With this type of coverage, the structure is different in that comprehensive coverage isn’t as expensive as the collision. This is probably because it is needed far less often than collision coverage. You should have it but make sure and buy it with a deductible as low as possible.
Other Types of insurance coverages
These types of coverage include towing, road service, car rental reimbursement, accidental death and insurance on certain equipment such as travel trailers, campers, bed liners, etc. We recommend towing, road service, car rental reimbursement, and accidental death coverage. Make sure that the underlying auto policy you purchased has towing and road service automatically included. If it does, you do not need to buy it separately. If not, you should purchase it additionally. This also covers roadside services such as being locked out of your car, running out of gas, having a flat, etc.
Car rental reimbursement gives you a fixed amount per day to pay for a rental car if your car is in some sort of accident. This does not include rental car coverage if your car is in the shop for repair. Accidental death coverage is life insurance on your automobile policy. Nothing more. I recommend it if you are unable to purchase life insurance on your own. Remember, this death coverage is only limited to auto-related death and is more expensive than general life insurance. It is not included for travel trailers and campers.
The next time you ask yourself: “What type of car insurance should I get?” we recommend that you have full coverage as outlined above.
If you or a loved one was in an accident, please do not hesitate to call us. Because of our success in successfully handling thousands of auto accidents we now have 28 offices throughout California. Please check above to see if we have an office near you or just call us at 1-800-718-4658. We promise you we will take care of everything. You will not be disappointed by the personal injury lawyers at Nadrich & Cohen.