Before getting behind the wheel of a new car, you need the financial protection that only auto insurance can provide. Navigating through the various coverage options doesn’t have to be difficult, but it can be confusing. Your state’s insurance laws will dictate some of the coverages you must carry, and if you finance or lease a vehicle, the entity that holds the title will most likely require you to carry a full coverage insurance policy. For 2020, the national average cost of car insurance is $1,555. So what’s included in full coverage and when can you drop some coverages for a more affordable policy? Don’t worry, we’re here to help you understand exactly which coverages you need.
What is full coverage insurance?
All states require you to purchase liability coverages and some also require you to carry medical payment or personal injury protection coverages. But state requirements don’t include all the coverages needed to protect your vehicle. A full coverage auto insurance policy includes:
- Bodily injury liability coverage: When you’re at fault for an accident, and the driver or passengers in the other vehicle sustain injuries, your bodily injury liability coverage will help pay their medical expenses
- Property damage liability: If you’re responsible for an auto accident, your property damage liability coverage will help pay to repair or replace another driver’s vehicle, or other types of damaged property
- Collision coverage: If you damage or total your automobile in a traffic accident, collision coverage will help pay to repair or replace it
- Comprehensive coverage: If a car thief steals your vehicle, or it’s damaged or destroyed in a non-collision event, your comprehensive coverage can help pay to repair or replace it
How much does full coverage insurance cost?
Collision and comprehensive coverages can significantly increase the cost of your auto policy. U.S. car owners pay an average annual premium of around $1,555 for full coverage car insurance. How much you pay varies from company to company and state to state.
Average cost by insurance company
Car insurance companies evaluate a number of personalized factors to determine how much you will pay for car insurance. These range from age and location to type of vehicle you drive and your driving history. Not surprisingly, rates for full coverage car insurance are more than those for minimum coverage car insurance.
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Average insurance cost by state
Full coverage auto insurance rates vary from state to state, with the 10 cheapest states offering rates approximately 30% less than the national average.
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Is full coverage insurance worth it?
Full coverage car insurance is always worth the cost if you own an expensive vehicle that you can’t afford to replace on your own. Parents of inexperienced teen drivers might also consider carrying a full-coverage policy, unless their kids drive an old car with little value.
Frequently asked questions
Is full coverage insurance required for all cars?
No. States require all drivers to carry liability coverage and some also require uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, as well as medical payments or personal injury protection coverage. If you own your car, you aren’t required to buy collision and comprehensive coverage. But if you finance or lease an automobile, the lender or leasing company will probably require full coverage car insurance.