There are two different types of optional coverages in your auto policy that protects you if your vehicle gets damaged: comprehensive and collision coverages.
What Do They Cover?
Comprehensive coverage, sometimes called “other-than-collision” coverage, insures you for any damage that could occur to your vehicle that is not a collision. This can include:
- Falling objects (tree branch, debris, etc.)
- Natural disaster damage
- Animal collision
- Vandalism and theft
Collision coverage insures you for what it sounds like, this can include damage to your vehicle from:
- Collision with another vehicle
- Collision with an object (fence, highway divider, EXCEPT animals)
- Single car rollover accidents
Notice that neither one of these options covers damage to another person’s vehicle, or medical expenses of you, your passengers, or another driver that you hit. This is where liability coverage and medical expense coverage come in, both which are required by PA law to have on your policy.
Deductibles and Cost
Both of these coverages will have a deductible along with them. This is the amount of money out-of-pocket before insurance kicks in. Typical deductible amounts are between $100-$1,500; the higher deductible you select, the less money you will pay for the policy overall, but you’ll pay more out-of-pocket if you have a claim. There are some companies that will reward you with a deductible credit program that gives you a credit towards your deductible every policy term, so you pay less when you have a claim!
Suppose you have a claim that costs $2,000 to repair and you have a $500 deductible. You would pay the first $500 and your insurance would pay $1,500. But if you had built up a deductible credit of $200 in the last two years with your company, then you would only have to pay $300, and your insurance would pick up the rest.
Value of Your Vehicle
The limit of money that the insurance company will pay out for a claim is the actual cash value of your vehicle (you won’t get a payment to repair your car for more than your car is worth).
If you have an older vehicle with a lower cash value, it may not be cost effective to keep these optional coverages on that vehicle. Call us to discuss your policy and if this is right for you.
Lease or Lienholder Requirements
When you are leasing or financing your new vehicle, the leasing company or lienholder may require you to keep these coverages on your policy for that vehicle.