How to find the best car insurance in Florida
Many drivers likely want to be covered under the best Florida car insurance company they can find. Since every driver’s needs are different and can depend on factors like vehicle type and coverage requirements, finding the best carrier largely depends on what aspects of auto insurance you choose to prioritize. However, you can take some steps to help you in your search.
Consider minimum insurance requirements in Florida
Florida is a no-fault state, meaning that regardless of who is responsible for an accident, each person involved is responsible for filing a claim with their own insurer to cover their medical expenses, at least at first. The at-fault driver is responsible for property damages. Florida’s state minimum car insurance laws are relatively unique; the state only requires personal injury protection (PIP) and property damage coverage. Bodily injury liability coverage is not technically required. However, the state does have a “financial responsibility law” that dictates that you must provide proof of your ability to pay for the damages you cause in an accident. Although auto insurance is not the only way to satisfy this law — you could post a bond, for example — most drivers opt to purchase a policy that includes bodily injury liability coverage.
Although Florida’s minimum required insurance coverage helps keep the state’s high premiums in check, drivers may find themselves with higher out-of-pocket expenses following a more serious accident where injuries or damages exceed the minimum amounts. While serious incidents such as car accidents cannot be planned for in advance, purchasing additional coverage upfront, including optional collision and comprehensive coverage, as well as uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, could help minimize unexpected financial losses.
Consider lender requirements
If you have a loan or lease on your vehicle, you may have different insurance requirements than just satisfying the state minimum coverage. Both lenders and lessors usually require full coverage, which adds comprehensive coverage and collision coverage to your policy. These coverage types provide substantial financial protection for both collision and non-collision damage to your vehicle, rather than just for damage you cause to another party. Lessors also usually require that you carry higher-than-state-minimum liability limits. You could also consider gap insurance, designed to pay for the difference between your loan value and the vehicle’s actual cash value if your new car is stolen or totaled. Gap coverage typically costs less if you purchase it from your auto insurer versus your lender.
Consider your individual needs
Every driver has a unique set of circumstances that they bring to car insurance. Your situation may affect the company, coverage types and levels, endorsements and discounts you choose. For example, if you have a teen driver, you may want to request quotes from companies that offer student discounts, which could help you lower your premium. If you have a few accidents, tickets, a DUI conviction or any combination of these incidents on your driving record, you might be considered a high-risk motorist. Your insurance company choices could be limited, so you might need to do a bit more research to find the best option for you.