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Every Driver Should Know About Their Insurance Policy
were around 100 cars on the road in the United States when the first
automobile insurance policy was purchased. In 1898, the vehicle of
choice was horse and carriage. The main concern of both insurers and
automobile drivers was the injury those noisy machines might inflict
things have changed. Auto accidents injure people every 14 seconds.
Every 13 seconds, a car accident kills someone. That adds up to 31
million accidents every year.
around 160 million registered vehicles on the roads today,
automobile insurance is the most widely purchased of all liability
insurance available. However, few drivers are knowledgeable about
the specifics of their policies.
Letís start with
the most basic fact: policies are priced differently, according to
the level of risk each driver poses. Insurance companies group
drivers into categories based on the loss incurred by the insurer:
Sex: men statistically have more
accidents than women
drivers under 25 are considered more at risk for accidents
Marital Status: married drivers tend to have less accidents
Personal driving record: accidents, speeding tickets, and drunk-driving
offenses factor into your risk percentage
Use of vehicle: commuting at rush hour puts you at greater risk
for accidents than the occasional driver. Drivers whose vehicles are
necessary for their work are at the greatest risk.
Type of vehicle: value, size, weight, age, and cost of replacement
parts all figure into determining the price of your policy. Larger,
heavier vehicles are considered a lower risk than smaller, lighter
ones. Additionally, the more expensive the car, the costlier the
repair, the high the insurance premium.
After you have an
auto accident, contact your insurance agent as soon as possible. An
insurerís claim adjuster who will evaluate damages and injuries
will then contact you. Compensation for auto repairs and medical
expenses is immediate, and the process is uncomplicated. Not so for
determining liability. The adjuster commences the settlement
process, but the length and difficulty will depend on the
cooperation of the other involved party.
are not required to accept the first amount offered if it does not
meet the cost of your repairs or recovery. If that is the case, it
will be well worth your time and energy to do a lot of research in
order to prove that your reported loss is valid ó your insurance
company is required to honor the provisions of your policy.
to separate the business of negotiation from the shock and emotional
impact of your accident. Your goal is to settle on a monetary amount
that is fair to both you and your insurer.
driving offenses are considered extremely serious, not only in terms
of the law and the loss of life, but also in terms of your insurance
company. First, be aware that a DUI offense remains on your record
for ten years. If you are found guilty, there are serious
consequences, set by the state you were arrested in. These penalties
often include the revocation of your license for a period of time
determined by a number of factors, including past offenses,
fatalities, and the level of your BAC (blood alcohol level).
it is true that many insurance carriers only check driverís
records every one to three years (so it is possible for your DUI to
go unnoticed), most states now require DUI convicts to obtain what
is called a SR-22 certificate from their insurers. Then a number of
things may happen: your insurance company will most likely raise
your premiums and label you a high-risk driver. They may decide to
cancel your policy. If so, you will then have to obtain insurance
with a cancellation on your insurance history. Even if your
insurance company misses your DUI at first, the company has up to
three years in most states to cancel your policy or raise your
speeding tickets, traffic violations, or ďpointsĒ can affect
your insurance rates. The good news is that there is a good chance
your insurer wonít find out, particularly if you received the
ticket out-of-state. However, it is considered quite serious if you
intentionally attempt to deceive an insurance company by leaving
convictions off an application. You may be charged with fraud, and
your policy will most likely be cancelled. This means that on future
policies, your rates may rise dramatically. Now letís draw some
conclusions. After reading this article, this should be fairly
DRIVE CAREFULLY AND DEFENSIVELY
If youíre in an accident, FIND OUT ALL YOU CAN ABOUT
YOUR INSURANCE POLICY.
DONíT SPEED or DISOBEY TRAFFIC LAWS
DONíT DRINK AND DRIVE.
One last thing to remember: driving can be fun, so
donít forget to have great trip!
This webpage is
brought to you for general information purposes only and there are
no warranties as to accuracy, completeness, or results obtained from
any information posted on this or any linked website.