You know you need car insurance, but do you understand how it protects you and your finances?
Our standard car insurance offers protection for you, your car, your passengers, and the other cars, people and property in an accident. Let's explore how auto insurance can be an important part of your overall financial plan.
When your car is damaged in a covered accident, your car insurance coverage can help you get it repaired or replaced with two key types of coverage - collision and comprehensive coverage.
If you are in a car accident and you collide with another car or something else, like a tree, highway guardrail or mailbox, your auto insurance collision coverage would cover the cost to repair your car, subject to the limits in your coverage and minus the deductible.
Your comprehensive coverage protects you when something happens to your car causing damage. If your car is stolen, vandalized or damaged by something, like a tree branch falling on it, your auto insurance comprehensive coverage would cover the cost to repair your car, subject to the limits in your coverage and minus the deductible.
Remember, general maintenance and mechanical repairs are not covered by auto insurance.
Medical payments coverage pays for medical expenses for you and your passengers following a car accident, regardless of who is at fault. This coverage is sometimes referred to as MedPay.
Medical payments coverage typically covers expenses for:
Medical and hospital bills including cost for emergency room care, hospitalization, surgery, and other medical expenses related to the accident
Dental expenses resulting from dental injuries in an accident
Ambulance and paramedic services needed for transportation to the hospital
Medical payments coverage is optional in most states, and only covers medical expenses up to the limit of your policy. You set those limits when you buy your car insurance. Once medical bills for an accident reach that limit, you will be responsible for any additional costs.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage, which is required in some states, extends coverage beyond just medical costs. In addition to medical expenses, PIP provides coverage for:
Lost wages if you or your injured passengers are unable to work due to injuries
Rehabilitation costs for physical therapy, occupational therapy, or other services needed for recovery
If you own a vehicle, in most states you're required by law to have liability coverage. If you're in an accident and are found to be at fault, your liability insurance will cover the damages that you're responsible for up to your policy limits. Again, you set those limits when you buy or update your policy with your insurance agent. There are two types of liability protection - Bodily Injury and Property Damage.
If you cause an accident and others are injured, your bodily injury liability coverage can provide protection for cost related to that injury including:
Medical expenses including the cost of hospitalization, surgery, and other medical treatments
Lost wages if the person injured is unable to work due to their injuries
Pain and suffering resulting from the accident
Legal fees and judgments
If you cause an accident, your property damage liability coverage can cover the damage to property resulting from the accident. That could include the following expenses:
Cost to repair the other driver's car
General property damage including items such as buildings, fences, and other structures that were damaged in the accident
Legal fees and judgment if the other person files a lawsuit against you
When you're in an accident with someone who is at fault and doesn't have liability insurance to cover the damage, your insurance can provide two levels of protection - Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage.
If the other driver doesn't have insurance at all, your Uninsured Motorist Coverage can help cover the damage to your car and medical cost and lost wages resulting from any injuries you incurred in the accident. This is optional coverage that can provide you with peace of mind knowing you're covered even when the other driver isn't.
Underinsured Motorist Coverage protects you when you're in an accident with someone who has auto liability insurance, but it's not enough to cover the damage.
If the accident was the other person's fault, their car insurance should pay the expenses. But if they are carrying their state minimum coverage, the amount required by law in their state, it may fall short of your car repair cost or medical expenses. Your Underinsured Motorist Coverage can help fill the coverage gap to help you recover from the accident.
You may also want to add more coverages to your car insurance to provide extra protection. Consider these add-ons to customize the coverage based on your needs.
When you buy a new car, you probably want to protect that investment. The Keeper* helps protect your new car if it’s totaled in an accident. If this happens, most insurance companies will only reimburse you for the current value of your car, reducing that value for depreciation.
Ask your insurance agent about The Keeper to learn more.
When you're stranded on the side of the road or you lock your keys in the car, your roadside assistance or emergency road service coverage can help. You’ll be reimbursed up to $100 total for towing, delivery of fuel, repair parts and labor charges.
Vehicle rental and trip interruption coverage helps if you have an accident away from home. Get reimbursed up to $800 for a rental car if you have a claim. If you have an accident more than 100 miles from home, this coverage also applies to travel expenses like transportation, lodging, and meals. These expense limits are different for each state, so ask your rep what this coverage looks like where you live.
Personal effects coverage protects you if things like your phone or laptop are stolen from your car. Just remember, the limit is $800.
Safety glass coverage helps if your windshield, car windows or headlight covers need repair. If you have this additional insurance, you don’t have to pay your Comprehensive coverage deductible.
Umbrella insurance is an extra layer of liability insurance over what you have in your auto and home insurance. The additional insurance is designed to protect you and your finances against large liability claims such as major accidents or legal settlements.
Your auto and home insurance liability protection has limits. An umbrella policy extends those limits and could provide coverage you need. Talk with your insurance agent about your personal situation.
Your COUNTRY Financial insurance agent will meet with you to help you choose the auto insurance coverage you need and find all car insurance discounts you can qualify for. When you contact your agent, be prepared to answer these questions.
Auto insurance policies issued by COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company®, COUNTRY Preferred Insurance Company® and COUNTRY Casualty Insurance Company®, Bloomington, IL.
*Restrictions may apply. See policy for details.