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How Does Car Insurance Work

Jan 26, 2008
Many of us know we have to have car insurance in order to get our license and tags. However there are some that don't really understand the actual policy or how it works to protect us. There are also different requirements for having a loan or lease on a vehicle rather than just owning it out right. Insurance companies ask a lot about our daily lives such as how we use the car, where we park it, and other aspects of driving to ascertain the risk we might pose to the vehicle they are covering.

Car insurance works in that we choose a level of coverage whether it is just liability or includes comprehensive and collision. There is also a choice in the amount of actual coverage regarding motorist, uninsured motorist, and medical. The amounts and type of coverage you choose is what will determine the premium you will pay on a month to month, six month, or yearly basis depending on the terms of your policy.

The amounts you have chosen and the type of coverage will tell the car insurance company how much they will have to pay out in the event of an accident caused by you or another driver. In other words they cover the damage that affects the car. For certain damage like windshields you will have a deductible that you have to meet in order to process a claim. If you have damage to your car from a break in, a rock thrown at the windshield, or an accident that you have been in you have to report the issue to the company in order to get a payout. The car company is going to ask for full details regarding the claim, the information from the accident claim, such as any ticket given to you and of course any damage to the other car if you caused the accident. They will ask that the car be taken to one of their mechanics that they have in their company logs. The mechanic is then going to report the amount of damage and how much it will cost to fix it. The car insurance will then take the quote and all information. In some cases they may consider the car totaled and will not offer any settlement towards fixing the car.

If you were not the cause of the accident you will still see a payout that may include covering the cost of a new car if it is totaled. It will depend on the insured's car insurance and yours. The car insurance company usually sends a check for the funds directly to you to help you get the car repaired or to replace the vehicle. The amount will again depend on the coverage you have as well as the damage. The car insurance company will only pay for the actual worth on the car, at the time. If the car's worth is less than the loan or lease you are still going to be responsible for paying off the lease amount.
About the Author
Mark Robinson writes for Auto-Insurance.GuideFin.com. Visit his website for information about auto insurance.
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