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What is car insurance?
Operating vehicles comes with an inherent risk of accidents, not to mention the many other things that can happen to cars. Car insurance can provide Texas drivers with important financial protection if something happens on the road — and something will invariably happen eventually.
Car insurance can protect against accidents and many other incidents. Policies often provide protection for a vehicle, its driver/owner and any passengers.
Who should carry auto insurance?
Texas generally requires all drivers who operate motor vehicles on public roads to carry auto insurance that meets minimum coverage requirements. Many drivers purchase additional coverage as well.
The minimum required coverages are threefold, and commonly referred to as 30/60/25 coverage. These refer to:
- Injury Liability Coverage in the amount of $30,000/person
- Injury Liability Coverage in the amount of $60,000/accident
- Property Damage Liability Coverage in the amount of $25,000/accident
Drivers who wish to purchase more protections can increase these limits and get additional coverages beyond these three basic ones. An insurance agent who knows auto insurance well can help drivers determine what coverages and limits are right for them.
What protections are available to drivers through auto policies?
There are a number of protections that auto policies commonly offer as standard or optional features. Some more notable protections include:
Possible Coverages Available
- Personal Injury Coverage: Normally protects against injuries to persons inside the vehicle
- Medical Payments Coverage: Normally protects against medical expenses for persons inside the vehicle
- Bodily Injury Coverage: Normally protects against injuries to persons in other vehicles, and to pedestrians
- Comprehensive Coverage: Normally protects against damage to the vehicle that doesn’t occur during accidents
- Collision Coverage: Normally protects against damage to the vehicle that occurs in accidents with other vehicles
- Property Damage Liability Coverage: Normally protects against damage to other vehicles and other property
- Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist Coverage: Normally protects against accidents involving illegally uninsured drivers
What’s the difference between comprehensive coverage and collision coverage?
Comprehensive coverage and collision coverage are the two main coverages that protect against damage to the insured vehicle. Collision usually applies when multiple vehicles collide with one another. Comprehensive usually applies when the insured vehicle is the only vehicle involved, such as hitting animals, theft, vandalism, falling tree branches and fire.
What is gap coverage in auto insurance?
Auto policies commonly offer gap coverage as an optional feature. The coverage typically applies to the difference between what a driver owes and what their vehicle is worth.
Should the insured vehicle be totaled while there’s a loan or lease on it, comprehensive and collision would only pay up to the vehicle’s current value. This is often less than what’s owed because of depreciation, thus creating a gap for which the driver is responsible. Gap coverage typically covers that financial gap so that drivers don’t have to pay the remainder of their loan/lease out of pocket.
Drivers who have leases or loans on their vehicles are often required to carry gap coverage. This protects the lender’s interest in the car, in case drivers can’t personally afford to pay the gap if their vehicle is totaled.
Is Texas a no-fault or at-fault state?
Texas’ auto insurance laws make it an at-fault state, where the driver who causes an accident can be held financially liable for any harm insured. The state’s laws allow drivers to sue responsible parties in most cases (if necessary).
How can drivers get car insurance for their vehicles?
If you need help insuring a Texas-registered vehicle, contact the independent insurance agents at McKnight Insurance. Our agents have worked with drivers to insure many different types of vehicles, and we’ll make sure yours is well protected with a robust car insurance policy.
McKnight Insurance Services Independent Agency in Mansfield Texas
Get in touch with one of our team members for questions or quotes!