What is comprehensive auto insurance coverage?

Accidents aren’t the only things that can destroy your car. Adding comprehensive coverage to your auto insurance policy can help cover repair or replacement costs when something other than an accident damages your vehicle.

What the full insurance covers

Comprehensive coverage provides protection against events beyond your control and not involving a collision, including:

  • Extreme weather conditions. Hail, hurricanes, floods, wind, tornadoes and forest fires. Comprehensive coverage can help pay for damages caused by Mother Nature.
  • Animal damage. When you crash into a car or stationary object, the collision covers it. But if you have a hookup with a deer, bear, or other wildlife, full coverage has it covered. It also covers the damage that mice, squirrels, groundhogs, and other rodents can cause if they get into your car.
  • Falling objects. If a strong gust of wind knocks down a falling tree branch on your vehicle, or if your car gets in the way of a meteor or other falling weird space objects, the complete solution is here for you.
  • Flight. If you’ve been the victim of a series of auto thefts in your area, a comprehensive solution can help you pay to repair or replace your vehicle.
  • Vandalism. If someone writes your car or punctures your tires, your insurer will pay for the repairs if you have full coverage.

What the set does not cover

While comprehensive coverage can be useful if something other than a collision damages your car, it won’t cover:

  • Medical bills. Comprehensive does not cover medical costs for you or anyone injured in an accident.
  • Crashes. If your car is damaged in an accident with another vehicle or a collision with a stationary object, Comprehensive coverage will not cover it. You need collision coverage for this. Comprehensive will also not pay to fix someone else’s vehicle.
  • Your personal property. If your phone is stolen from your car, Comprehensive will not pay to replace it or anything else that has been removed from your vehicle. However, your home insurance policy may reimburse you for stolen items.

How comprehensive insurance works

If you need to file a claim, you must pay a portion of the repairs up front before your insurance takes effect. The amount you pay is the deductible, which you select when purchasing the policy. Your insurance company will tell you which deductible amounts you can choose from.

As a general rule, the higher the deductible, the lower your premium will be. Once you have paid the deductible, the insurer covers the remaining repair costs up to the policy limit.

The policy limits for full coverage are generally lower than the limits you might select for liability coverage. This is because full coverage does not pay for lawsuits that might result from an accident.

The policy limit on your comprehensive coverage is usually the market value of your vehicle. And that’s the maximum amount your insurer will pay for repairs even if it isn’t enough to cover the damage.

For example, let’s say your car is worth $ 2,000 and the hurricane that hit your town caused $ 5,000 in damage to the vehicle. The insurance company will likely “total” your vehicle and issue you a check for $ 2,000 (less your deductible).

To find out the market price range for your vehicle, consult our valuation tool.

What is the difference between collision insurance and comprehensive insurance?

When collision coverage kicks in, it’s usually because you’ve had a collision with a pothole, rolled over your vehicle, or been in an accident. And you need to fix your vehicle. Comprehensive insurance also covers physical damage to your vehicle, but it kicks in when something other than an accident (for example, inclement weather) causes the damage.

Is multi-risk insurance compulsory?

Comprehensive coverage is optional in all 50 states. But lenders usually require it. If you are leasing a car or taking out a car loan, you will likely need to purchase full coverage as a condition of your financing.

How much does comprehensive insurance cost?

In 2018, the average premium for full coverage was around $ 168, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). But how much you’ll pay depends on several factors, including the age of your vehicle, the cost of repairing or replacing it, theft rates and extreme weather conditions where you live, and more.

Is comprehensive insurance worth it?

When deciding to include comprehensive coverage in your auto insurance policy, consider whether you can afford to repair your car or buy a new vehicle if the one you are currently driving is damaged. If you can’t, maintaining comprehensive coverage can help protect your finances, but it depends on the value of your vehicle.

If the cost of your premium and deductible exceeds the value of your car, it’s probably not worth the extra expense. But if the cost of your premium and deductible is significantly less than the value of your car, adding the protection may be worth it.

For example, let’s say your full coverage premium is $ 200 per year, your deductible is $ 500, and your car’s actual cash value is $ 13,000. If a tree falls on your vehicle causing damage of $ 5,000, the insurance company will issue you a check for $ 4,500. And you will have paid $ 700 for your premium and your deductible.

But if the value of your vehicle is $ 1,500, the insurance company will only reimburse you for $ 1,000 in damages. So, full coverage may not make sense in this case.

Can I cancel the comprehensive insurance?

If you don’t have a loan or car rental, you can remove full coverage from your auto insurance policy at any time. But before you remove the cover, run the numbers to make sure it makes financial sense.

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