Do you really need both collision and comprehensive insurance?

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Drivers don’t want too much coverage – or too little.


Key points

  • Comprehensive insurance provides protection for vehicles damaged by causes other than an accident.
  • Collision insurance provides protection in the event of a car accident for which the policyholder is at fault.
  • Many people should consider purchasing both collision and comprehensive insurance.

Good auto insurance provides protection against financial calamities. After all, accidents can happen to anyone, and most people can’t just pay to repair or replace their vehicle out of pocket if something goes wrong.

But sometimes it can be difficult to understand exactly what types of coverage are needed to put the right protections in place. In particular, many drivers wonder whether it is necessary to purchase the two collision and comprehensive insurance with their car insurer.

What is the difference between collision insurance and comprehensive insurance?

Although comprehensive insurance may seem to cover everything, including collisions, the reality is that these two types of insurance are extremely different.

Collision insurance provides coverage for a driver who causes a motor vehicle accident. For example, if a motorist causes an at-fault accident, the motorist may damage his own car as well as the vehicles of others. The responsible driver’s liability insurance would pay for repairs or replacement of other vehicles involved (except in no-fault states). And the at-fault driver’s collision insurance would pay for the repairs to their own vehicle.

Comprehensive insurance, on the other hand, would not cover collision damage at all. But it pays for most other things that could go wrong with a car – hence the name. Full coverage would pay for repairs in situations where a tree has fallen on the car, for example, or the windshield has been damaged by a rock thrown onto the road, or the car has been stolen.

Why do most drivers need both?

Since collision and comprehensive insurance cover different types of calamities that may occur to a vehicle, it is important to have both types of coverage. Without having both types of insurance protection in place, it’s possible that something could go wrong with the car that isn’t covered.

Most drivers can’t afford to pay thousands of dollars for repairs to their vehicle if they’re at-fault in an accident – but that’s exactly what they should do if they caused an accident without insurance. collision. But they also probably can’t afford to pay to replace their car out of pocket if it’s stolen or run over by a falling tree, so comprehensive insurance is also required.

The only possible exception, however, is in situations where a car has limited value. Generally, neither collision nor all-risk coverage is required by law, so drivers can choose to purchase this coverage or opt out (although car lenders may impose this coverage, and it may be required if the car is rented). If the car is worth little and the insurer would end up paying barely any money to repair or replace it in the event of a covered loss, then it’s possible that no type of protection is really needed.

Drivers should consider whether they could afford to replace their entire car if something went wrong or would rather pay premiums to pass those costs on to insurers. In most cases, this will lead to a decision on whether collision and comprehensive coverage is worth buying.

Make sure you choose the right auto insurance coverage

Car insurance is something most people don’t think about very often. Although there are many factors that lead people to change car insurance companies, it is important to educate yourself to ensure you choose the right coverage for you. The right coverage means not paying for coverage you don’t need and not giving up coverage that is right for you. Although price is a major factor, we also consider other factors such as customer service and the claims process when choosing what we believe are the best car insurance providers.

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