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Auto Insurance Options

By Compuquotes Team on March 27th, 2008

Auto Insurance

Before supplying customers with cost quotes, most auto insurance companies these days will provide prospective buyers with a long list of options. It's often confusing to determine just what these extras really offer, and even more confusing to decide whether they are worth the money, or even needed. It's imperative to know the basics before shopping around, as well as any existing forms of coverage that a buyer may already have from other sources. That way, it's easier to have an idea of which options may offer a peace of mind worth the additional cost.

All auto insurance policies offer 3 standard, basic components; the most well-known provides payment for damages or car replacement as a result of a motor vehicle accident. It's referred to as Collision Coverage. This provides coverage at the market value, not only the insured's vehicle, but to stationary objects that the car may have hit, such as mailboxes or telephone poles. However, coverage for repairs that are needed due to natural disasters, theft, or other such incidents is only considered under Comprehensive Coverage. Some companies' comprehensive policies also provide for repairs not covered by insurance of other drivers involved in collisions with the insured, as well as medical costs for the driver and passengers. Forty percent of the insured's premiums pay for these two components on any auto insurance policy.

The remaining sixty percent of the costs of car insurance go towards protecting against damages from an accident that is the insured's fault. Liability Coverage offers security from lawsuits, not just involving vehicle damage, but the other driver's medical treatment, lost wages incurred from their inability to work, and additional sums for emotional "pain and suffering."

There are countless options available, due to the industry's effort to remain competitive and attractive. For example, some insurers offer Medical Payment Coverage for additional medical treatment needed as a result of an accident. Another addition may be an Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist Coverage option, which can provide additional payment for damages not covered by insurance of the other driver involved in an accident. Towing and Labor insurance covers these services when a vehicle is involved in an accident that renders it not drivable. Another extra offers coverage if a car's tapes, CD's or other electronic devices face vandalism or destruction. Automobile Trip Interruption insurance covers expenses for food or lodging if a traveler's car becomes un-operational while on a trip. One of the most popular options allows for rental car use while the insured's car is being repaired. Another new offering, sometimes referred to as Accident Forgiveness, give a "break" to drivers who have their first or rare accident, or are involved in accidents that are not their fault. These "breaks" could take many forms, depending on the insurer.

It should be clear that having adequate auto insurance is a necessity, since the costs involved with any accident have the potential to be financially devastating. However, a driver should also consider ways to reduce their basic auto insurance costs by checking for senior or young driver discounts, and by considering deductibles and limits. They should also research their existing medical and life insurance coverage or Automobile Association benefits; often existing policies may already offer similar coverage options.

Automotive insurance professionals can offer their skills and experience to help drivers obtain the best plans and options to meet their needs.

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