Planning to get a car insurance policy? Ask these important car insurance questions before you get one.
When it comes to car insurance, most people choose the coverage keeping in mind the car insurance premium.
While it’s not wrong to think about the car insurance rate and choose an affordable policy, it might make you underinsured and more vulnerable to the risks of the open road.
That’s why it’s always important to ask the right car insurance questions to your agent to get the best car insurance policy for you at a price of your choice.
Here are 20 important auto insurance questions you should ask to get the best possible coverage.
Is Car Insurance Required?
Yes. Car Insurance is mandatory in most of the states in the US. If you are driving without a car insurance policy then you are breaking the law for which you can go to jail.
However, 2 states namely New Hampshire and Virginia do not require car insurance.
New Hampshire does not require your car to be insured but if you are a high-risk driver, you may need to get SR-22 car insurance.
Virginia also doesn’t require car insurance but you will need to register your car if you are driving uninsured.
What is the minimum car insurance coverage requirement?
This is one of the most common car insurance questions.
The answer to this question depends on the person and the car to be insured.
In most states, liability coverage is enough to become eligible to drive a car. This coverage protects the other person who gets injured by your car or whose vehicle gets damaged but it does not protect you.
If you have an old car or you are capable enough to repair your car in case it gets damaged, then liability insurance is enough for you.
But if you have a new car, then you should consider getting full coverage to protect yourself and your precious car.
What are the different types of car insurance coverages?
Here are some most common coverages that you should consider based on your requirement.
- Bodily injury and property damage coverage – This coverage pays for the damages caused by your car to another person or his property.
- Personal injury protection – This covers the medical expenses for the treatment of the other person’s injuries and lost wages without considering who was at fault.
- Collision coverage – This coverage pays for repairing the damages done to your car in a collision.
- Comprehensive coverage – This coverage pays for repairing the damages done to your car that are not done due to collision. For example – fire, vandalism, theft, etc.
- Uninsured and Underinsured motorist coverage – This provides you protection when you are in an accident and the other driver doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough insurance.
Is car insurance needed if you don’t own a car?
This question is also one of the important car insurance questions asked by people who don’t own a car but drive frequently.
If you drive a rental car frequently, you should consider getting a non-owner auto insurance policy.
This provides basic liability coverage that only protects other drivers or their vehicles. This policy does not provide collision or comprehensive coverage because they are designed to pay for the damages done to your car and in this case, you don’t own the car.
How much car insurance do you need?
The question tops the list of car insurance questions asked by people but there is no straightforward answer for this.
The answer to this question depends on you and the type of car you drive.
Liability insurance is the minimum amount of coverage you need but it does not provide full financial protection to the driver, unlike the full coverage.
If you drive a luxury car, then you should consider getting full coverage because repairing a luxury car after an accident might become very costly for you.
Also, you should consider the medical and legal bills that you may need to pay in case of a serious accident.
Ask yourself if you are financially that strong to cover those bills out of your pocket? If not, you should get full coverage.
How to get discounts on your auto insurance policy?
Many insurance carriers offer discounts to new customers. You should ask your agent for more information on discounts given by companies. Here are some discounts you may get if you qualify for any of these situations mentioned below:
- Multi-policy discount – If you get more than one policy from the same insurance company, you may get a discount. For example – if you purchase auto as well as home insurance from the same company, you may receive a discount from that company.
- Good student discount – Several carriers give a discount to young drivers who get good grades in their school.
- Multi-car discount – If you have more than one vehicle covered under your auto insurance policy, you can get a discount.
- Discount for installing anti-theft devices – If your car has an anti-theft device and other safety features installed, you can become eligible for discount.
- Higher deductible – If you choose a higher deductible, your insurance company can provide you a discount.
Some other discounts that are available:
- Accident-free car for a certain period of time
- College students living away from home
- Enrolled in a driving course
- Good credit
- Low mileage
Consult with your agent for the discounts offered and what you are eligible for.
How much does car insurance cost?
This is also one of the most frequently asked car insurance questions.
The cost of car insurance is calculated based on the factors associated with a person’s car. So it varies from one person to another.
However, in 2020, the average car insurance cost was $1,555.
Also, the residents of different states pay different amounts. For example, New Jersey drivers pay $1,264 (the most) whereas Idaho drivers pay $572 (the least).
How to lower car insurance premiums?
There are 2 significant ways that you can consider for lowering your car insurance premium.
- Pay premium annually or semi-annually – Some insurance companies offer a discount of 3% to 10% if you pay your premium this way.
- Increase your deductible – Deductible is the amount you pay from your own pocket before your insurance comes into play. The higher the deductible, the lower your premium will be.
You can also consider some other ways for lowering your premium. These include:
- Shopping around for different quotes
- Comparing costs before buying the policy
- Reducing coverage on old cars
- Bundling policies
- Ask about group insurance discounts
How long it takes to file a car insurance claim?
Filing a car insurance claim should not be difficult. Several companies provide you the facility to file a claim online or by telephone.
But the time taken for processing the claim may vary depending on the claim type.
Does car insurance cover old cars?
Several insurance providers cover old cars and you will also pay less premium compared to the premium you will pay on new and expensive cars.
However, the make and model of the car plays a more important role instead of the car’s age in determining the cost of your car insurance policy.