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Archive for June, 2010

What Material Damage Means For An Auto Insurance Policy

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

When you have been involved in an auto accident, the last thing you need is more stress and confusion. Navigating the complexities of filing a claim while juggling any immediate medical needs, lost work time, disputes from the other party’s insurance company, and more can be enough to send your peace of mind packing. You want your car back in your driveway as quickly as possible, and preferably shining like new, and that is why it is important to ensure a clear understanding of insurance industry terms like “material damage.” This term, simply translated, means that damage to the policyholder’s insured property has occurred. Therefore, the material damage policy should clearly outline for you, the policyholder, what the insurance company is legally obligated to do about it.

When filing a claim that involves property damage, you may become acquainted for the first time with an individual called the material damage adjuster. This individual is in charge of conducting an on-site inspection of the damaged vehicle and making an accurate assessment of damages, which the insurance company will then use as its baseline for making claim payouts.

This is also why it is so important to understand how a property damage claim will be assessed while gathering auto insurance quotes. Be sure to ask your agent to explain in detail exactly how your claim will be handled in the event of damage to insured property. Auto insurance quotes should clearly explain damage coverage benefits, which should include property damage, collision damage, and comprehensive damage. Reputable insurance companies should provide a damage policy that covers full reinstatement of the asset in question – in this case, the automobile – to its original condition prior to the cause of the damage or loss.

Understanding this makes it easier to see how claims can quickly become complex and why the need for a thorough pre-accident understanding of what is actually owed to you, and why a material damage adjuster may be necessary. For instance, if you have had your automobile for five years, you might assume that you are entitled to all brand new parts during a claim repair. The insurance company, on the other hand, may cover only the usage of refurbished parts commensurate with your car’s condition at the time the accident occurred. Outside of the legal need to carry insurance while operating a motor vehicle, the material damage coverage policy is one of the primary reasons why you want and need insurance in the first place. Make sure that any insurance carrier you are considering offers a fair and comprehensive policy with clear procedures to follow for getting reimbursed after an auto incident.

Knowing Your State Financial Responsibility Laws

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Every state has its own laws for auto insurance and these laws will govern the type of coverage which is mandatory and other laws which define the minimum amounts that have to be covered under various heads. These laws define the financial responsibility that fall on the insurer for any injuries or damage caused during any accident. Financial responsibility laws require that you furnish proof of your ability to pay up in case of an accident. These proofs can be in the auto insurance coverage that is taken, and which has to provide for the minimum liability as per the laws pertaining to the state in which you are insured. Auto insurance quotes from auto insurance companies would normally cover such liability insurance. Coverage can be a minimum of $20,000 for individuals and up to $40,000 for all, which may include a $15,000 cover for property damage.

Most states require basic liability coverage by their laws and comprehensive and other coverage is optional. This basic coverage gets around the financial responsibility laws of the state. Penalties for violating the financial responsibility laws can even cause the loss of driving licenses and impounding of the vehicle. This proof of insurance has to be carried at all times and may require to be produced at any time. Most auto insurance companies would provide this proof in the form of cards that are easy to carry. Failure to carry such proof can make a driver liable to penalties and citations, which could reflect on the driving license. Once such citations are made, renewal of premiums could become a problem and insurers may ask for higher premiums.

Present laws in most states require compulsory auto insurance which covers the financial responsibility as well. In earlier times, financial responsibility had to be proved after an accident and could be in the form of an insurance coverage, depositing cash, bonds or stocks. Financial responsibility could also be proved by posting personal bonds to cover the liabilities. In most cases licenses remained suspended until proof of the financial responsibility was given to the authorities under whose jurisdiction the accident had taken place. Subsequently most states have made it mandatory to cover this financial liability in basic insurance coverage.

Knowing the financial responsibility laws of the state where you are using your vehicle becomes essential for any driver. This would indicate the minimum coverage that would be required in order to complete the statutory requirements. Allowing other persons to drive your vehicle does not absolve you of the financial responsibility in case of an accident to your vehicle. Financial responsibility has to be demonstrated by persons owning the vehicle. It’s worthwhile to shop around for different auto insurance quotes.

3 Tips For Finding Low Auto Insurance Premiums Online

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

When you’re looking online for low auto insurance premiums, there are a lot of different things to consider. You don’t want to just start spamming every company and insurance site with your information, hoping to come across one or two places with dirt-cheap insurance. Low insurance means getting a good rate for everything you’re offered, and that may not necessarily mean the cheapest rate you can find. Instead, it might mean paying a good rate for a lot of coverage – just don’t pay for things you won’t be using.

There are three important tips to pay close attention to when it comes to seeing success with your auto insurance quote search. First, don’t pay for optional coverage just because it’s inexpensive. If you won’t be using the coverage, if it’s duplicate coverage (roadside assistance when your car’s warranty already provides that, for example), or if it’s something that’s overpriced, skip it. Don’t let your insurance company’s agent talk you into something that you really don’t need. You don’t have to succumb to the pressure of a sales pitch.

Second, shop around. You don’t have to choose the insurance company your friends all use, the one your mom recommends, or the one with the flashiest website or the cutest TV commercials. Those flashy things cost money, and the people who use that company may have very different circumstances than you do. Consider your own circumstances and insurance issues rather than relying on someone else’s opinion of what company you should use. You’re the only one who knows what you really need and want from an insurance company. Sticking to your own game plan will help you get low auto insurance premiums and save money while still making sure that you’re well-covered if you get in an accident or if your vehicle gets stolen or vandalized.

Lastly, when you get an auto insurance quote, be sure you know what you’re comparing. You want to compare apples to apples, not apples to oranges. In other words, if you compare $50,000 worth of coverage from one company with $35,000 worth of coverage from another company, you can’t be sure which one is the best deal based on the prices you’re quoted.

You have to compare equal information if you’re going to be able to make a good decision as to which insurance company is the best one for you. When you set out to compare online quotes, know what kind of coverage you use and what you want for service and price. Then you can check with several companies and see what they have to offer you. The one that’s closest to what you’re looking for should be the right choice.

3 Signs That An Auto Insurance Quote Is Too High

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Shopping around for auto insurance premiums can be a nerve-racking endeavor. It’s so tough to know if you are making the best deal with the best company at the best possible price. A premium too high can force your budget into an uncomfortable spot.

But never fear, for you are not alone in your fight to get the most out of your auto insurance dollar. When receiving auto insurance quotes there are a number of things that you should look for to know you are paying out too much money in your premiums. Here are the top 3 signs that your auto policy quote is too high.

The first sign is if the quote you are being given is more money than your current policy. Chances are you’re shopping around because the money you are spending on auto insurance is already too much. If you are doing a quote with another company and the price you are getting back is higher than you pay now, it’s worth asking. You need to either redo your online auto insurance quotes or to ask the agent preparing your quote to make sure all the information they entered in is correct.

The second sign you might be paying too much is if you were never given the opportunity to apply for discounts. Very few plans exist in the world without driving incentives and discounts. The very nature of these programs is to bring the cost down to you and drive business in. If you have done an online quote or were speaking with a representative and incentives and discounts were never covered, then there is something that needs to be fixed.

But make sure you ask. Often times people do not ask because they just assume that it’s been adjusted or the person that is handling it already knows about the discounts and has taken care of it. But never assume when it comes to lowering your auto insurance premiums.

The third sign you may be quoted too much has to do with your address and zip code. Do not assume that a person or a computer knows accurately the town or zip code you live in. This can make a huge difference as far as what you have to pay in insurance premiers. Living in a hugely populated city like Chicago versus a quiet Chicago suburb like Lyons, Illinois can mean the difference between paying a little on your car insurance and paying a lot.

Auto insurance quotes can be a tricky thing. If you pay careful attention to the information you are receiving you can purchase it at a rate that is affordable for you. Do the research and find the best rates for you.

3 Reasons To Buy Emergency Road Service Coverage

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Depending on automobile transportation is a fact of life for most people. Vehicles provide transportation to work, school, shopping and sundry activities. This transportation is, for the most part, very reliable. Every once in a while, circumstances arise that render vehicles useless. They usually seem to occur at the worst possible time. A breakdown on the side of the road, the only set of keys locked in the car, and a flat tire all make travel temporarily impossible. Roadside assistance coverage provides help with these unforeseen emergencies by covering the expenses for towing, locksmith service and help with changing tires. Surprisingly, this coverage adds very little expense to the auto insurance quote.

Towing

No matter how well maintained the car; the unexpected can and does happen. There is, often, very little notice before the red warning light comes on signaling a mechanical failure is on the horizon. There is no choice but to pull off to the side of the road and call for towing. It’s a relief when this unexpected expense is covered by insurance. Roadside assistance is almost always associated with towing, but that’s not the only benefit this coverage provides.

Locksmith

It isn’t only space cadets who lock their keys in the car. It can happen to anyone. Perhaps, instead of being locked in the car, the key breaks off in the ignition. If this happens on the hottest day of the year and two weeks’ worth of groceries are in the car, a solution needs to be found, and quickly. A locksmith’s skill doesn’t come cheap. It can, however, be covered by roadside assistance. Quality road service encompasses towing, locksmiths and more.

Changing a Flat Tire

Almost everybody, with enough years of driving experience, has heard the dreaded bumping sound that signals a flat tire. Most people know how and are prepared to change a flat tire. If the tire blows out in a bad neighborhood, being outside the car changing a tire is a vulnerable place to be. A woman traveling alone may not feel confident enough to change it herself. It’s a relief to know that help is just a phone call away.

Automobiles rank as one of the most useful machines ever invented. Millions of people rely on them daily to get them to the important places they need to be. On those days when life throws a curve ball, and the car breaks down on the way to work or the keys are locked in the trunk, the mood can quickly turn gloomy. The added expense of remedying the situation further adds to the misery. Being prepared by having had roadside assistance included in the auto insurance quote can brighten the day.

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