Not All Auto Policies are Created Equal - 3 Things to Ask Your Agent

Your softball buddies ask you out for a burger after the season opener. You think to yourself, “I ran around the bases at least 3 times. I’ve earned it”. You jump in the co-pilot seat of your teammate’s car and motor on to the downtown strip. In the distance you see the familiar sign of your favorite pub and can just taste the flamed burger that awaits.

And just as you think your celebration is ready to commence, your classless teammate turns into the drive-thru at the nationwide burger joint that we will call PacDonalds. You feel crushed and a bit queasy. That second feeling may be from the food that has yet to hit your stomach. This fast food lesson can apply to almost any aspect of your life but as insurance nerds, we thought it gave a good representation how not all insurance policies are created equal. Check out these 3 questions you should be asking your agent about your auto policy.

  1. What are my limits?

You hear the term ‘state minimum’ often from a certain gecko, caveman, or general on tv commercials. This term refers to minimum dollar amount of coverage you must have to legally drive. In Ohio the required minimum for Bodily Injury Liability Coverage is currently $25,000 per person injured in any one accident and $50,000 for all persons injured in any one accident. The required minimum for Property Damage Liability Coverage is $25,000 for injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident (commonly displayed as 25/50/25).

Carrying minimum limits has its place if you very rarely drive or you really need to pinch pennies. However, if the costs of the accident exceed these amounts, YOU are the one who is on the hook. Only you know what your budget  for insurance but your agent should guide you so that you don’t get burned from an accident.

  1. What if someone without auto insurance or too low of limits hits me? Then what?

This is an ugly one as you did everything you needed to. You stopped at the stop sign, waited your turn, but Johnny Leadfoot blew right through and t-boned your car. To make matters worse, he does not have insurance or possibly just took off! Two different items could come into play here: Uninsured or Underinsured Motorists.

Uninsured motorist coverage protects you if you're in an accident with an at-fault driver who doesn't carry liability insurance.

Underinsured motorist coverage comes into play when the at-fault driver has liability limits that are too low to cover the damage or medical expenses. Typically, the at-fault driver's insurance will pay for all damages up to the policy limits, and then your underinsured motorist coverage will cover the excess amount up to the limits you select.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage is provided for bodily injury and property damage - cost of medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, etc. There is a separate coverage known as Uninsured Motorist Property Damage coverage that we won’t get into here but ask your agent about when you call.

  1. My college-age kid is getting great grades! Can this help lower our auto insurance premium?

You are in luck! Most insurance companies will offer a discount for young drivers with good grades. With how expensive post-secondary education can be these days, every little bit counts, and you can use this as a mutual goal for your child to both save money and earn solid grades.

The best part about these three items is that you can solve them with a quick 5 minute phone call with your agent. Or better yet, just give us a call! We take great pride in our service to our clients. You will get to know your agent and know you have someone looking out for your insurance needs- no matter how complex or tedious they may be.

 

Contact us directly at 440-349-3670 or Info@InsureOhio.com

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