When you walk into an insurance provider and ask for full coverage, you’ll likely have a different idea than they do. This is because most drivers assume full coverage will protect you in every aspect of an accident.
Unfortunately, this isn’t the case; however, it does cover you in all of the most important areas. Below, we will discuss what full coverage car insurance is and whether it really covers everything that you need.
What is Full Coverage Insurance?
There are three main aspects of full coverage. It is designed to make sure that all drivers are covered in the most important areas. Often times, these three areas are also the most expensive types of insurance that you will want to add to your policy.
However, they are also the three most expensive types of claims that people can process. The three components of full coverage car insurance are liability, comprehensive, and collision coverage.
Liability is an add-on that protects you from any third party costs in an accident. If you are found at fault, you’ll not only be responsible for your own medical and vehicle costs, but the other party’s as well. With liability coverage, your insurance will cover the other driver’s medical and property damage costs, but only if you are at fault.
This type of coverage isn’t related to accidents, though it’s incredibly useful. Comprehensive coverage helps to protect your vehicle from damages that occur from anything other than an accident. This could include theft, vandalism, fires, rockslides, and more.
Third, you have collision insurance. Collision coverage is required to help protect you from having to pay for any damage to your vehicle out of pocket. It will likely either cover the costs of repairing or replacing your vehicle if your car is affected by another object, such as a guardrail, or another vehicle.
What Does Full Coverage Insurance Cover?
As with any type of insurance, your policy might differ depending on the insurance company you work with. Additionally, every state has its own requirements for coverage, so this may also alter your policy. With that being said, most often, full coverage auto insurance will cover:
Damage to Others
The amount of damage to third parties that will be covered depends on your liability limits. When choosing liability insurance, you’ll need to choose the total amount of money available to cover third-party damages.
With full coverage, your vehicle has a sufficient amount of protection. It will cover the fair market value of your vehicle, minus your deductible. It will also cover your vehicle if you are found at fault or if it’s damaged from a natural disaster. You’ll also be protected if the third party doesn’t have insurance or if your vehicle is stolen.
If you’re found at fault, full coverage will pay for the medical costs for you and your passengers. Similar to liability, your medical bills will be covered up to your set medical limit. You will also be protected if you’re in an accident with an uninsured driver based on your uninsured motorist limits.
Towing is one of the most frequently packaged items included in full coverage. This helps to make sure your vehicle can be brought to a safe location in the event of an accident or a breakdown.
Some insurance companies will give you a certain limit when it comes to car rentals. If your vehicle is unable to be driven because of an accident, you might receive some reimbursement for needing to rent a vehicle.
What Doesn’t Full Coverage Insurance Cover?
Before you sign any type of insurance policy, it’s important to read the fine print. There are several things that full coverage won’t handle.
In the event that something you need isn’t included with the policy, you’ll have to pay more for add-on features. With that being said, most of these features are affordable and won’t add too much to your annual premiums.
Racing and Off-Roading
If you own a racing vehicle or race with your everyday vehicle, full coverage won’t give you any protection. You will have to purchase separate insurance for this. Additionally, if you are in an accident as a result of street racing, you won’t receive any coverage. This also applies to off-roading.
Even though most natural disasters are paid for by full coverage, catastrophes aren’t. You won’t receive any coverage as a result of war or nuclear events.
If your vehicle is confiscated or destroyed by government entities, the costs will not be covered by your insurance.
If you are using your vehicle as a business vehicle, you will likely have to purchase a different type of insurance for a sufficient amount of coverage.
Intentional Vehicle Damage
Even though this is a very unlikely event, intentional vehicle damage is obviously not covered by full coverage.
Gap insurance might not be included with your full coverage, as it’s a separate item that you’ll have to request from your insurance provider. In most cases, the agent you’re working with will suggest it, but it’s important not to assume it’s automatically included.
Is Full Coverage Required?
Car insurance can be a hefty cost, which is why most drivers try to find ways to cut back on their insurance. Full coverage is incredibly useful in plenty of situations; however, not all drivers will find that it’s necessary. You may be better off creating your own customized insurance to fit your needs.
The most important thing to remember is that as a driver you are financially and legally responsible for property damage and physical injury as a result of an accident. This is why most people opt for full coverage. Additionally, you’re responsible for any amounts that surpass the limits that you’ve set for your insurance.
With that being said, there are also drivers that will have no choice but to buy full coverage. For example, if you are financing a brand new car, you will have to purchase full coverage. It’s important to discuss these options with your insurance provider to find the most responsible and affordable coverage.
Full coverage considers mostly everything for the everyday driver. However, not every policy is the same as the next. You’ll certainly want to make sure you talk to an insurance agent to make sure you’re getting everything you need.
With the right full coverage car insurance policy, you won’t have to worry about paying for anything out of pocket unless the total costs of the accident surpass the limits that you have set.