car insurance can ’ metric ton keep you from getting into an accident, but it can help pay the brawny medical bills and repair costs that come from a dangerous crash. How much your policy will pay out depends on the types of car policy you buy and the limits you choose. here ’ s a guide to coverage options.


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How car insurance works

Most car policies include several types of cable car insurance coverage, each designed to pay for different expenses. For example, one partially of your policy might cover repairs for your vehicle, while another pays for person else ’ sulfur price. Each character of coverage has a specify — the maximum your policy will pay. You can customize many of these limits based on how much coverage you want and how much you ’ ra bequeath to pay for your policy. The higher your limits and the more types of coverage you buy, the less fiscal duty you ’ re likely to face after an accident — but the more expensive your policy will be. To decide what coverage you need, research what ’ south required in your state and what will best protect your finances.

What car insurance coverage is required?

At the identical least, your cable car indemnity policy will include your state ’ s minimum required coverage types and limits. While minimal car indemnity requirements vary by state of matter, the independent types of indemnity coverage you could be required to get are :

  • Liability policy, which pays for expenses due to an accident you cause .
  • personal injury protection, or PIP, or medical payments, or MedPay, to cover your own aesculapian expenses after an accident, no matter who ’ mho at blame .
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage to pay for price from drivers without cable car policy, or without enough to pay for damage they cause .

Types of car insurance coverage at a glance

How your cable car indemnity works depends on the coverage you buy. Take a look below at the main types of cable car indemnity coverage and how they work ; then read on for more details and very examples .

coverage type What it pays for
Liability coverage medical costs due to injuries or deaths from an accident you caused, and animate costs for property you damaged .
Uninsured motorist coverage medical and animate costs after an accident with an uninsured driver .
Underinsured motorist coverage Expenses from an accident with a minimally insure driver. This coverage pays once the underinsured driver ’ south coverage limits have been met .
collision coverage haunt expenses from traffic-related accidents, regardless of who is at defect .
comprehensive coverage repair costs from events outside your control — including weather events, hitting an animal while driving, larceny and vandalism .
medical payments coverage checkup expenses for you and your passengers after an accident regardless of fault .
personal wound protection indemnity medical expenses, adenine good as lost wages, child manage, funeral costs and other losses due to an accident regardless of fault .
Gap policy The difference between what you owe on your car and your car ’ south true marketplace value .

Liability insurance

If you cause a car accident, liability car indemnity will cover the cost of any subsequent damage, injuries or deaths. All states, except New Hampshire and Virginia, require this coverage. There are two types of indebtedness coverage for car policies : Bodily wound indebtedness pays for expenses from injuries or deaths in an accident you cause. place price liability covers repair costs if you hit another vehicle or other property such as a fence or build up. The come of indebtedness coverage in a policy is normally expressed as three numbers. For model, 100/300/50 means :

  • $ 100,000 bodily injury for each person in an accident.
  • $ 300,000 for bodily injury per accident .
  • $ 50,000 for property damage per accident .

Your cable car insurance will pay up to the limits on your policy. After that, you ’ ll be on the hook for extra expenses. How it works : You cause a multicar accident, damaging two other vehicles and injuring four people. Your property damage liability coverage would cover repairs for the two vehicles, while your bodily wound coverage would pay the medical bills of the people you injured. The lowest potential limit will apply. If you had the coverage listed above and caused $ 100,000 worth of injuries to four different people, those checkup bills wouldn ’ triiodothyronine be completely covered because your per-accident maximum is $ 300,000. To make this type of scenario less likely, in some states you can choose a aggregate single specify alternatively.

PIP and MedPay

personal injury protection and medical payments coverage pay your own aesculapian expenses after a car accident, no matter who was at fault. They besides cover checkup expenses for hurt passengers. personal injury protection, sometimes called “ no-fault indemnity, ” may besides cover funeral costs, child care or lost wages due to injuries from an accident. How it works : You and a passenger are both injured in an accident, and you end up missing work for a copulate of weeks. Because you live in a no-fault state of matter, your policy includes PIP, which pays for hospital bills for both you and your passenger, plus your lost wages .

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Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage

Uninsured motorist coverage pays costs that consequence from an uninsured driver hit you. About 1 in every 8 drivers do n’t have car policy, according to a 2019 learn by the Insurance Research Council. Underinsured motorist coverage pays out when the at-fault driver has insurance, but their limits are besides depleted to cover all of the price. Some states require a minimum amount of uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. hera are four coverage types that may be required :

  • Uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage, or UMBI, pays for medical expenses caused by an uninsured driver .
  • Uninsured motorist property damage coverage, or UMPD, pays for haunt expenses caused by an uninsured driver .
  • Underinsured motorist bodily wound coverage, or UIMBI, pays out if the cost of injuries and repairs is more than an at-fault driver ’ s bodily injury liability limits .
  • Underinsured motorist place price coverage, or UIMPD, pays for repair costs that surpass the at-fault driver ’ s property damage indebtedness limits .

How it works : A driver rear-ends you at a red light. When you go to exchange insurance information, you discover the driver has none. Your UMPD coverage pays to repair your bumper, while UMBI coverage pays for medical expenses.

Collision and comprehensive coverage

collision and comprehensive indemnity are optional in every submit, but may be required by your narrow if you financed or leased a vehicle. This coverage pays to either fix your cable car or recoup you for its value if it ’ second steal or damaged beyond repair. collision insurance pays for damage to your car after an accident, regardless of who was at demerit. It will besides pay for pothole price. comprehensive indemnity pays out if your car is stolen or damaged by anything other than a car accident. That includes price from storms, floods, falling objects, explosions, earthquakes, vandalism or contact with an animal, such as hitting a deer. Both comprehensive examination and collision coverage generally come with a deductible, which is the come of the insurance claim you ’ ll have to cover before your insurance company pays. The higher the deductible you choose, the lower your premium will be. How it works : You hit a deer and damage the hood of your car to the tune of $ 3,000. Your comprehensive examination insurance deductible is $ 1,000, which you pay to the haunt shop class. After that, the remaining $ 2,000 is covered by your insurance company.

Gap insurance

A new car ’ mho rate begins to drop the moment it leaves the cable car bunch — faster than loan balances decrease at beginning. If you total a fresh car that hasn ’ metric ton so far been paid off, gap insurance will cover the remainder between what the car is worth and how much you owe on your loan. If you ’ re leasing a car, the lease company might require you to carry gap insurance. normally, the car dealer will provide the opening policy, and the monetary value will be included as character of the lease payment. however, that results in paying pastime on coverage you can typically get cheaper through an insurance company. How it works : You owe $ 20,000 on your car loanword when you get into a bad accident and your new car is totaled. Your collision coverage would cover the total sum of your car ’ second commercialize value ( minus deductible ), about $ 18,000. If you have gap indemnity, your insurance company would cover the remaining $ 2,000 on your car loanword.

Additional coverage options

You can choose from a diverseness of extra options, which normally don ’ metric ton monetary value besides much to add to a policy but can come in handy in an emergency. You ’ ll indigence to buy collision and comprehensive to be eligible to purchase some of these extras .

  • lease reimbursement pays for a rental car while your car is in the denounce following a breed claim repair .
  • Roadside aid, or towing and labor movement coverage, provides avail if you break down and need a battery jump or a tow .
  • New car refilling insurance works similarly to gap policy and will pay for the value of a fresh car if yours is totaled in an accident. Most insurers offer one coverage or the early only.
  • Full glass coverage pays to repair or replace chipped or broken window glass, without a deductible .
  • Rideshare policy will cover you when you ’ ra drive for a rideshare service such as Uber or Lyft .

once you ’ ve determined the coverage options you want, it ’ mho significant to shop around and compare car indemnity rates. Gather at least three quotes to make certain you ’ re getting the best potential deal on whichever coverage you choose .

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