There are two main car insurance systems in the US market. In most states, an accident insurance company pays the accident victim. But in about a dozen states, the “No Fault” system operates, in which the victim receives compensation from his or her insurance company, regardless of the culprit. In some regions, you can choose between these two types.
Most states require at least civil liability insurance, that is, damage that the driver may cause to other road users or surrounding property. In some, you can refuse insurance, but, as a rule, you still need to confirm your solvency in the event of an accident. For example, in Virginia, uninsured car owners pay a state fee of $500 a year to the state, and a special certificate must be made in Mississippi for a certain amount.
The standard liability insurance formula is written in three numbers. In the metropolitan area of Columbia, the minimum insurance requirements are: 25/50/10. The first is the amount of maximum compensation for physical or moral damage to one victim in thousands of dollars (that is, up to 25 thousand dollars), the second is the maximum amount of payments for all victims in the framework of one accident, the third is compensation for material damage to property. These limits vary markedly from state to state. For example, in California it is 15/30/5, and in Maine – 50/100/25.
For lack of insurance, where it is obligatory, punishments are envisaged from large fines to the seizure of rights and even a prison term. In North Carolina, permanent citizenship numbers will not be issued without a motor vehicle policy. In Arizona, they suggested exploring the possibility that insurance companies would issue license numbers to car owners and expire with the policy. So it would be easier to identify those who shy away from acquiring insurance. Typically, the car owner needs to have proof of insurance on paper or in the form of a plastic card, but several states have already introduced laws on electronic confirmation of insurance when making an accident.
However, most car owners are not limited to the minimums of citizens. Optional but very common is insurance of possible damage to one’s own health or property, including in the event that the culprit of the accident does not have a policy or its coverage is insufficient. Most Americans buy policies, but the risk of running into a driver without insurance is not so small. According to the Insurance Information Institute, on average, about one in eight drivers in the United States does not even have minimum insurance. In the USA there is no free medical care, and everything connected with calling an ambulance is measured in sums with three or four zeros at a minimum. The price of insurance may depend on a number of factors, including those usually used in the calculation of age, gender or length of service, as well as more exotic ones, including a credit rating and a car owner’s history. The average cost of car insurance varies greatly from state to state and ranges from 1 to 2.5 thousand dollars a year.
Factors affecting the cost of car insurance
What parameters are taken into account when calculating the cost of personal car insurance?
- age (insurance is much more expensive for applicants aged under 25 years old since most accidents are committed by people under 26 years old, therefore, the coefficients for this category of persons are increased);
- availability of local rights (if you are a state resident, then you must have local rights, plus insurance is much cheaper with them);
- driving experience (the experience you had in another country is also counted, just send a copy of the license);
- higher education (you get discounts up to 10% if you have higher education – especially if you are an engineer);
- availability of stable work and high income;
- marital status and children;
- type of insured car, its age and cost, availability of a security tax on a car (credit/leasing – 10-30% more expensive);
- availability of anti-theft systems;
- the presence of a garage (insurance can be cheaper with it);
- credit history;
- driving history (whether you had penalties for the last year – this factor affects most since it characterizes you as a driver);
- availability of a certificate of the school of emergency driving;
- the state where you live and will use the car (accident rate by state is taken into account);
- the county in which you live (again, the accident rate for the county, the median income of people living in the county and other less obvious parameters);
- figures for insurance premium payments for the previous year, for example, due to hurricanes on the East Coast in the winter of 2016 and a large number of payments, insurance companies have increased the rates for policies from June 2016 for all states.
What does insurance consists of?
Liability Coverage – compulsory civil liability. This is the most important coverage, especially for states where all responsibility lies with the culprit.
If the insurance of the accident culprit will not cover all the expenses in the event of an accident with serious damage to the automobiles, the missing amount will be required from him or her in court. And it will be covered by all family bank accounts, owned property, shares, and the amount of 25% of the money earned by all family members in the next 10 years.
That is why, when insuring a car, you should imagine the worst and be sure that tomorrow you will be able to pay for it.
Medical Coverage / Personal Injury Protection is mandatory in some states, such as New York and Florida, and is optional in California.
But those who live in states where this coverage is not necessary should consider including it in the insurance, because these funds are issued instantly, regardless of who is to blame for the incident. While the trial is ongoing, you need to get medical help – and you can take money for this from this coverage.
And here are 2 more types of coverage that should be included in your insurance policy – they will provide protection in the event that you encounter a person on the road who does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance.
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury covers liability for personal injury and moral damage,
Uninsured Motorist Property Damage covers damage from damage to the vehicle.
Since many factors affect the cost of the policy, the most correct decision is to find a professional broker who will help you choose exactly the car insurance you need.
To minimize risks, you should contact only licensed insurance agents or large insurance companies. Do not fall for low insurance prices, as they often mean immediate benefits and a possible big loss in case something unpleasant happens on the road.
Where to buy car insurance?
You can go to aggregator sites (for example carinsurance.com), enter data, SSN number and get quotas. Then, you can apply for car insurance online.
You can contact an agent who can find suitable insurance with discounts and can further advise on issues related to it.
Well, you can also ask friends who have insurance and go to the insurance website. But this is far from a guarantee that your price will be as low because everything is very individual. Discounts may even be due to the fact that you also insured a house in the same company.
In any case, everything is done via telephone and regular email.