Almost every state has laws stating that people have auto insurance, but the actual regulations regarding auto insurance vary from state to state - so the type of coverage that you require depends on the state in which you live in.

Even if there are no laws, it is highly recommended that you have some form of cover; otherwise you may end up paying out huge amounts of money in the event of an accident, or even losing your home, in a worst-case scenario.


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Auto Insurance Glossary - What You Need To Know And Understand

Most of us have vehicles in USA, and with vehicles come the need for auto insurance. This is something that we just cannot get away with, whether we like it or not. Often, we get auto insurance without having a clue to the various terms associated with it. Here are a few auto insurance terms that you can go through, to help you understand the many nuances of auto insurance.

  • Absolute Liability - Liability regardless of fault.
  • Additional Insured - A party that is named on an insurance policy.
  • Adjuster - The person who investigates and settles claims for an insurance provider.
  • Age Limit - The minimum or maximum age of driver that a company will insure.
  • All-risk policy - A policy that covers all losses, except those otherwise stated.
  • Amendment - A formal document stating changes to the policy. Must be signed by both the provider and the customer to be binding.
  • Automobile Physical Damage Insurance - Coverage for a vehicle in case it is damaged or lost through fire, theft, collision, or various other incidents as stated on the policy.
  • Certificate of Insurance - A certificate assigned to an individual, outlining their levels of coverage and insurance benefits as agreed when signing-up to a policy.
  • Claim - A request for payment after an incident that is covered in the terms of the policy.
  • Collision Insurance - Protection against costs incurred due to collision with another vehicle or object, regardless of fault.
  • Commission - The amount of money paid to a broker or agent for arranging an auto insurance policy.
  • Comprehensive Insurance - An insurance policy that provides cover for losses resulting from any form of damage, other than that occurred by collision.
  • Compulsory Liability Insurance - The minimum amount of insurance a driver is required to have, as stated by state law.
  • Deductible - The minimum amount that a policy holder will pay per claim.
  • High-Risk insurer - A company that will insure motorists that have poor driving records.
  • Liability - Protection against monetary loss due to causing injury or damage to persons or property.
  • Personal Injury Protection - No fault coverage, in which the insurer pays medical costs, funeral expenses, wage losses or other types of personal losses to the customer.
  • Premium - The amount paid by a policy holder to gain agree levels of coverage with an insurer.
  • Proof of Loss - Documentation presented by a customer to support their claim, so that the insurance company can determine the level of payout, such as itemized estimates.
  • Renewal - Continuing a policy for another term, after agreement of both the policy holder and insurer.
  • Standard Risk - A person who will be insured under regular terms - i.e. they are not a high-risk or low-risk customer.
  • Uninsured Motorist Coverage - Coverage in case of damage or injury caused by an uninsured (or underinsured) driver.
  • Waiver - An agreement to exempt certain types of coverage from a policy that would otherwise normally be covered.

This list will help make things easier for you when you want to buy your auto insurance.

Car Insurance Q & A

Question: If someone borrows my car and crashes it, does my insurance apply, or does theirs?
Answer: Generally speaking, the liability follows the car, so your insurance would apply, as it is your car. The liability insurance of the driver often pays the additional amount if the costs payable are above your policy limits.

Question: If a child goes to college with mom or dad’s car, are they covered under the parents’ personal auto policy?
Answer: This can vary from company to company. Check with the insurance provider and make sure that the child is listed as an additional driver. Do this before the child goes to college, and it will avoid unnecessary disputes later on.

Question: Do I need ‘gap’ insurance?
Answer: If your vehicle is on finance, and its value is now less than the amount you owe, then yes you need gap insurance. If you owe less than its value, then no, you do not need gap insurance.