A Review of The Coverages on An Auto Insurance Policy

Any vehicle that is driven on the road needs to be insured in almost every state in the United States. Even in the states where it’s not required, such as New Hampshire, you are still, of course, financially responsible for any damage you cause other people with your vehicle. Even in that state you still have to prove that you have the financial resources to cover these damages. 

Liability coverage is the main portion of an auto insurance policy, covering both the bodily injury and property damage you may negligently cause while driving your vehicle. The Wikipedia page on vehicle insurance shares that this is the part of the policy that almost every state requires. Beyond that, there are some states that require other coverages while they can be waived in other states. 

Uninsured and/or underinsured motorist coverage may be required in some states while most allow you to waive this coverage. This provides coverage in the even someone without auto insurance, or has low limits of liability that are exceeded, hits you. Another coverage that might be required or can be waived in personal injury protection or PIP. This is coverage, usually with a limit of $10,000, that pays for medical coverage for you and your passengers in an accident regardless of who is at fault. 

People who have a loan on their car are required by the lender to have comprehensive and collision coverage. Collision covers your vehicle, with a deductible, if you negligently hit something and cause damage to your car. Comprehensive coverage covers other types of incidents, also with a deductible, such as your car being stolen, keyed, having a tree fall on it, or other types of damage. 

There are additional coverages on auto insurance policies that can be purchased. These coverages are available in every state such as auto insurance Thornton CO. One of these is towing and roadside assistance. This covers having your car towed a reasonable distance or the labor cost of having someone come out and replace a tire or other similar services. There is also gap coverage which covers the cost between what your car is worth and how much you owe if your newer vehicle has a covered claim and is totaled. 

One thing to consider, as this article talks about, is when to drop comprehensive and collision coverage. If your car is paid off and is an older model it often makes sense to drop these two coverages. It doesn’t make a lot of financial sense, for example, to pay $600 a year for comprehensive and collision coverages on a car that’s only worth $3,000. 

A term people use is “full coverage insurance” although that really doesn’t exist. Everyone has a different definition of what this is. Some people consider it to be just liability, comprehensive, and collision. Others add in uninsured motorist and personal injury protection as well. It’s for this reason that it’s important to define what coverages you’re looking to drop when talking with an insurance company agent or representative when you decide to reduce coverages on your older vehicle.

 

Why You Need To Obtain a Commercial Policy for Vehicles Used in Your Business

Vehicles that are used in business need to have a commercial insurance policy in order to be properly covered. Personal lines of auto insurance do not cover vehicles that are used for commercial purposes such as a contractor driving to job locations. These types of insurance policies are generally bought by small business owners from the same insurance company that they have their other commercial policies with such as their general liability insurance. 

This Wikipedia entry provides the classifications of what a commercial vehicle is. One of the definitions includes that the vehicle is owned by a company rather than an individual. Even if a small business owner has the vehicle in their own name they still need to insure it as a commercial vehicle if it used for business purposes. 

A vehicle will also be considered a commercial vehicle if it exceeds a certain weight. Many companies consider anything over 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight to be a commercial vehicle. The high cut-off is anything over 26,001 pounds which all insurance companies consider to be commercial vehicles. So, even if you’re just commuting back and forth to work in a dump truck the sheer weight of the vehicle means you need to have a commercial auto insurance policy on it. Another criterion is that if you are hauling hazardous material your vehicle will be considered one being used for commercial purposes. 

Every state requires commercial vehicles to have an insurance policy in place to cover liability. This includes commercial truck insurance Chicago IL which can be bought from virtually every insurance agent in that part of the country. Depending on the type of vehicle it can be insured either through one of the large insurance firms or through an insurance company that specializes in commercial vehicles. None of the big insurance companies will provide coverage on taxis, for example, while there are a few insurance companies in Chicago that will cover these types of vehicle’s uses. 

The types of coverage typically found on a commercial vehicle can be read about in here. Beyond liability coverage, there are also other coverages available such as uninsured motorist, comprehensive, collision, and towing/roadside assistance. The premium will be determined based on the type of vehicle, where it is garaged, the coverages, and the driving records of whoever will be operating the vehicle(s) that make up a company’s fleet. 

The commercial insurance policy only covers the vehicle itself and whatever additional gear is a permanent part of it. It doesn’t cover whatever the vehicle may be transporting. There is a rider available, with an additional premium, to cover the items that are being transported such as if they are stolen or damaged in an accident. 

When it comes to comprehensive and collision coverage the higher the deductible the less the premium will be. How the deductibles work can be illustrated by using an example of a $500 collision deductible. If there is a claim on this coverage and the insured vehicle sustained $2,000 in damage then the insurance company will pay for $1,500 of that damage while the business owner will pay the first $500.