In Washington State, we are required to purchase car insurance before driving our motor vehicle. If you are stopped by law enforcement, they will ask for your insurance and if you cannot produce it you can expect a fine of at least $450. About 10 percent of the population chooses to go without car insurance, which makes it especially important for you to be well covered. There are, however, many levels and brands of car insurance from which to choose. How do you decide if you have the right level of protection for you and your vehicle?
Top 2 Things to Know When Choosing Car Insurance
1. Understanding the Value of Coverage
In Washington State, we are required to have full coverage as long as there is a loan on our vehicle but it may make sense to continue this coverage even after you own the car outright. Your insurance agent should be able to help you decide the right coverage for you. A full coverage policy may ensure that you receive compensation for damages and injuries in the event that you are in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, provide a rental car while your car is being repaired, pay for medical care to heal from an injury, pay for body-work, provide liability coverage in case you are sued, and so much more.
2. Liability Coverage is Important
Many insurers recommend carrying $1,000,000 in liability coverage as part of your car insurance policy in the event that you are sued for damages in an accident deemed your fault. Even a small car accident could result in a claim worth upwards of $30,000 and you don’t want to be stuck paying out of pocket.
Liability coverage can also come back to you if you are not at fault in a car accident. For example, if you are injured in a car accident and incur medical bills and lost wages due to time off of work then you will sue the other driver’s car insurance for damages. If their policy only covers $15,000 and you are suing for more then you could cover the difference through your own policy. The bottom line is you should consider the value of your vehicle and other assets and purchase the largest amount you can afford.
Check your Car Insurance Policy for the Details
It is best to know exactly where you stand when it comes to your car insurance coverage. Your insurance company should be happy to go over the details with you and make sure that you are comfortable with the levels of coverage. Request a copy of your declaration page and make sure that your uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage is equal to your liability limits. Increase you coverage limits to $1,000,000 or as high as you can afford to. You will need to be proactive! If you are not satisfied with what you current company is offering shop around and get a side by side comparison to be sure you are getting the best value for your money.
If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, you have enough to deal with. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the caring accident attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!