What is car insurance?
Car insurance helps provide financial protection for you, your family, other passengers, and your vehicle. You can choose the amount of protection by selecting your coverages and limits. An auto insurance policy can provide coverage for:
- Medical expenses
Understanding Your Auto Insurance
Your auto insurance policy consists of multiple coverages that provide protection in different situations involving your vehicle. Coverages have different limits and may have deductibles. Specific coverages and limits may also be required by a lienholder or lender.
To better understand your policy, there are several insurance terms you should know:
- Coverage: protection and benefits provided to you
- Limits: maximum amount of protection for a specific coverage
- Policy: contract between you and your insurance company
- Premium: price of your insurance policy
- Deductible: portion you pay out of pocket, if you file a claim
When you compare car insurance rates, make sure they’re for the same coverages, deductibles, and limits. Shopping for car insurance is easy and fast with GEICO. Learn more about how auto insurance rates are determined.
Types of Car Insurance Coverage
First, let us clarify that there’s no such thing as “full coverage.” Some people may say “full coverage” means the minimum liability coverages for their state, comprehensive coverage and collision coverage. But it could also mean something else. Ultimately, you should choose the coverages that are right for you. “Full coverage” is an insurance myth.
What are the different types of coverages? Auto insurance includes liability coverages, vehicle coverages, coverages for yourself, and other optional coverages.*
Liability Coverages include:
- Bodily Injury liability: pays damages for bodily injury or death resulting from an accident for which you are at fault
- Property Damage liability: pays for damage to someone else’s property resulting from an accident for which you are at fault
For serious accidents, you want enough insurance to cover a judgment against you in a lawsuit without jeopardizing your personal assets. Therefore, it’s a good idea to have the same level of bodily injury coverage for all your cars. You may also want to consider an umbrella policy which provides additional coverage for more serious accidents and lawsuits.
- Medical Payments coverage: may pay medical expenses related to a car accident
- Personal Injury Protection coverage: may pay for your medical treatment, lost wages, or other accident-related expenses regardless of who caused the accident
Uninsured Motorist Coverages
- Uninsured Motorist coverage: may help compensate you for your injuries or property damage caused by a driver without insurance
- Underinsured Motorist coverage: can protect you from at-fault drivers with insufficient insurance coverage to pay your claim
- Collision coverage: may pay for damage to your car when it hits, or is hit by, another vehicle or other object
- Comprehensive coverage: may pay for damage to your car from theft, vandalism, flood, fire or other covered losses
You may be able to lower your premium if you select a higher deductible. If you have an older vehicle you may want to consider whether you need these coverages as they are normally limited to the cash value of your car.
Additional Auto Insurance Coverages
There’s a lot to learn about auto insurance coverages. If you have questions, contact our licensed insurance agents at (800) 861-8380.