Don’t Forget to Review Your Automobile Insurance Coverage

Do you drive around assuming that you’re covered if the unexpected were to happen?

Welcome to part two of our blog series exploring what to look for when you review your insurance
coverage. Previously, we looked at what to look for when reviewing your homeowners insurance. Here, we’ll explore how to review your automobile coverage.
In the coming months, we’ll look at the important aspects of other kinds of insurance. Let us know your questions, and feel free to suggest additional
insurance coverages you’d like us to target. 

Don’t Put Your Auto Insurance on Autopilot

You’re a smart driver. You wear your seatbelt, make sure your vehicle is equipped with
airbags and always obey the laws of the road. But are you protecting yourself
with quality auto insurance policy coverage? Do you drive around assuming that
you’re covered if the unexpected were to happen? Do yourself a favor – Take the
time out regularly to do an insurance policy review to truly understand your
automobile coverage. It’ll make all the difference when it comes to your safety
and financial security.

Why? To be sure you are receiving the best possible rate with all eligible discounts. Also, to ensure your automobile
insurance coverage has no gaps and is right for you before you have a loss

When? At renewal or whenever you’re thinking of making a change like changing cars or adding a young driver to your policy

How? Set up an appointment with your agent to go over your policies.

10 Questions to Ask During an Auto Insurance Policy Review:

When it comes to our car insurance rates, it’s easy to fool ourselves into thinking the lowest price
is the best value. But buying the wrong type of automobile coverage can cost us more in the end. Here’s what we should ask ourselves:


    1. What is liability coverage and why is it so important?

            Essentially, this is your “lawsuit defense fund.” If you’re at fault in
            an accident that's covered by your policy, and other people and/or
            property are injured or damaged, Liability coverage helps protect you
            from the cost of these damages and the legal expense to defend you.

  2. Do we have adequate liability coverages on our policy?

          It’s probably in your best interest to purchase higher limits. If someone
          else is injured and you're at fault, the minimum liability coverage may
          not cover their medical and other expenses, in which case their attorney
          will most likely go after your personal assets. Your insurance agent can
          help you determine what’s appropriate.

  • Is the underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage
          adequate for my family and me?

          Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is basically a liability policy
          for someone else that causes bodily injury or property damages to you if
          they carry no insurance or very little insurance. While it may not seem
          fair that your insurance is picking up the tab in this situation, it’s
          crucial that you’re protected with the appropriate amount of automobile

  • What’s the difference between Collision and
          Comprehensive coverages? Do we need either or both?

          We all need both. Collision coverage helps protect you from repair costs
          to your car if you're involved in a covered accident. Considering it's a
          covered loss (that's insurance-speak for an accident that's specifically
          covered by your policy), Collision helps pay for the repairs, up to the
          actual cash value of your car needed to get it back on the road.
          Comprehensive covers the accidental damages to your car that Collision
          does not, including storm damage, vandalism, theft or striking an animal
          (unfortunately here in NJ, that’s often deer). Similar to Collision
          coverage, the higher the deductible the lower your premium, though the
          savings are usually not as great.

  • Do accidents and tickets affect our rate? Any way to
          hedge this risk?

          Accidents and tickets affect car insurance in different ways depending on
          certain details, as well as your insurer's underwriting guidelines. There
          will not always be a negative impact on the policy premium; however,
          rates may be increased or a policy may be non-renewed if the accident is
          classified as chargeable. If you see inflated premiums following
          accidents or ticket, you’ll want to talk to your agent to see if a
          cheaper rate is available.

  • Are we covered if we need to rent a car while our
          vehicle is being repaired due to an accident? Do we want to be?

          Rental Car Reimbursement Coverage will reimburse you for the cost of a
          rental vehicle after an accident while your car is being repaired. Talk
          about convenience!

  • What’s PIP and how much do we need?

          PIP covers not only reasonable and necessary medical and hospital
          expenses, it can also help you with income continuation, household
          services, funeral expenses and even child-care expenses while you’re
          healing. Your agent can help you review your current car and health
          insurance coverage policies to determine how much coverage you need, but
          one thing’s for sure, New Jersey requires it.

  • Are we missing any discounts?

          One of the primary reasons to review your auto insurance policy coverage
          is to be sure you are not overpaying. Reviewing discounts is a simple and
          easy way to accomplish this. Some common discounts include defensive
          driver, good student, multi-policy, safe driver and good payer.

  • What’s new or has changed with our policy?

          Always ask your insurance carrier whether there have been any changes or
          adjustments to your policy coverages. Have they added any new guarantees
          or enhancements? If so, review the cost vs. benefit to you.

  • What impact do young drivers have on our rates?

          Fortunately, the cost of teen auto insurance doesn’t have to break the
          bank or cause unnecessary stress. You can get dependable, affordable
          automobile insurance coverage for teenagers with discounts from a quality
          insurance company.


    Automobile coverage is a crucial building block in the foundation of your budget. And it’s all about
    the right mix of price and protection. Your insurance agent can help you select the right automobile insurance coverage for your lifestyle with every available
    discount, which can add up to some serious savings… of money AND stress!

    Next in our insurance policy review blog series we’ll explore what to look for in a personal umbrella
    policy. In the coming months, we’ll look at the important aspects of other kinds of insurance. Let us know your questions, and feel free to suggest
    additional insurance coverages you’d like us to target.

    This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

    brokeninbayville September 01, 2012 at 12:42 PM
    Would you please re-post the homeowners policy questions. Somehow I missed it. Thank you


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