Car Insurance 101: Getting the Facts Right

accidents-5-184093-mAs a follow-up to the most recent blog post, I wanted to continue writing a bit about car insurance. This is a topic that is very closely related to personal injury law. All too often, drivers are not insured or are drastically underinsured and then they can face serious financial loss, should they be found negligent. As a personal injury attorney, I have seen far too many people suffer as a result of little or no car insurance – both the negligent parties and the victims.

In order to ensure that you are fully protected should something happen during your travels, it is wise to understand the ins and outs of car insurance. While I certainly cannot cover everything that comes into play in a single blog post, I can cover two important topics – who your policy covers and the importance of acknowledging vehicle use.

Who Does Your Insurance Cover? Have you ever hesitated to lend your car to a friend or family member for fear that they will get in an accident? With the right car insurance coverage, you don’t have to worry as much. There is a major misconception among the drivers of this country that car insurance coverage is only for the person listed. While it is true that the policy covers that driver, the insurance is on the vehicle listed, not the person. That is to say that regardless of who is behind the wheel of your car, the car insurance company should pick up the bill after an accident. That being said, if someone is going to be a regular user of your vehicle, he or she should be listed on the car insurance policy.

When Will Your Coverage Be Denied? It is important to understand, as with anything in life, there are some rules when it comes to car insurance. If you are growing tired of your older car in Saint Petersburg and you decide to do intentional damage in the hopes of totaling the vehicle, your car insurance company is likely to deny your claim. If they can prove that you caused the damage intentionally, they can rightfully decline to cover it. You may also be denied if the damage is a result of failure to care for regular maintenance concerns. In other words, if you didn’t have your oil changed for an excessive length of time and it results in mechanical issues, the car insurance company is not going to pick up the bill.

Why Do You Have To Tell The Insurance Company About Your Driving Habits? When you contact your local St. Petersburg car insurance agency about a car insurance policy, they are likely to ask you about the primary use of your vehicle and the number of miles, on average, that you put on your vehicle annually. It is important to be upfront about these facts. If you are involved in a major auto accident because you are travelling for work, but you told your car insurance agent that the car is not used for work purposes, they could technically deny the claim. As a side note, related to this statement, if you are using your vehicle regularly for work, it is possible that your employer carries some level of car insurance coverage on your behalf. Be sure to inquire about that before getting a new car insurance policy.

Understanding the basics of car insurance can save you a great deal of money down the road, so be sure that you do your research, ask questions, and get the very best value from your car insurance policy.