What is Comprehensive Insurance and Why Do I Need it?

insurance agent with paperwork in front of car accident

Trying to decide between all the different types of insurance you may need when obtaining new insurance coverage for your auto is challenging. Florida is one of the most expensive states in the country in auto insurance costs. Naturally, we all want to save as much money as we can when we get insurance so we may elect not to get certain coverages if we do not understand what they provide. You cannot rely solely on the advice of an insurance agent when deciding what coverage you need to be fully protected against all losses. Educating yourself on what each coverage option covers is key to making the most informed decision on what you need to be fully protected against all potential losses.

Comprehensive Insurance coverage is not a mandatory coverage in Florida. Therefore, you may think it is not necessary to have it. However, you may be leaving yourself open to unexpected and expensive repairs or the total loss of your vehicle if a loss occurs. Comprehensive insurance covers just about anything that could happen to your vehicle outside of an accident. This is the coverage you use if your car is stolen, vandalized, or damaged in almost any event EXCEPT a collision. Comprehensive coverage will also pay your claim after vehicle damage caused by an earthquake, collision with an animal, falling objects, explosion, fire, wind, flood, lightning or hail. Most Comprehensive policies also cover glass repair.

Many people in Southwest Florida learned what Comprehensive coverage is and what it covers the hard way after the widespread flooding from Hurricane Ian resulted in thousands of vehicles being destroyed. This left many people upset that they did not have this vital coverage when they were forced to cover the cost of purchasing a new vehicle following the storm.

Some examples of what Comprehensive insurance covers are:

  • A tree falls on your car during a storm
  • Your vehicle is damaged in a hail storm
  • You hit an animal with your car
  • Someone vandalizes your car by breaking all the windows and slashing your tires
  • Your vehicle is stolen
  • An object from the road or an unidentifiable vehicle hits your windshield

Comprehensive insurance typically does not cover:

  • Another vehicle hitting your vehicle
  • Your vehicle accidentally hitting another vehicle
  • You back your vehicle into a pole or other object
  • Another vehicle backs into you, even if your vehicle is parked
  • Rolling your vehicle over an object or “bottoming out” your vehicle

Comprehensive insurance coverage is an important coverage to have, especially in Florida where we are highly susceptible to weather events like hurricanes, floods, lightning, hail, and debris damage from wind. Also, Florida currently ranks seventh in the United States for car thefts. Vandalism is also on the rise in Florida. To find out if you have this coverage, check your auto policy or contact your insurance agent.

Disclaimer: This is not legal advice or to be inferred as legal representation.

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