Collision coverage pays for costs if your vehicle is damaged.
If you’re at fault in an accident, your liability insurance kicks in and pays for the other driver’s costs. For your own vehicle repairs, you’ll need collision coverage.
What does “at fault” mean? To be considered at fault means that you’ve caused an accident. In most states, being at fault means your insurer will pay for the car repairs, medical bills and related expenses that result from the incident.
What is collision coverage?
While driving, you could hit another vehicle or a stationary object. After, you’ll probably get your car fixed or replaced. If you have collision coverage, you’ll be covered for most of the costs you incur.
Collision coverage doesn’t cover costs for damage to other people’s property. You’ll need property damage liability coverage for that. It also doesn’t pay for others’ medical expenses — only bodily injury liability coverage will reimburse those expenses.
Furthermore, collision coverage usually won’t protect you against costs for damage that’s classified under “acts of God or nature.” This might include a tree hitting your car or an angry mob vandalizing your vehicle. You’ll most likely need comprehensive coverage to pay for those costs.
Does it come with a deductible?
Collision coverage comes with a deductible. You’ll choose how much you want your deductible to be when you’re buying insurance. To decide, weigh how much car repairs would cost against how much you’d want to pay out of your own pocket. The higher you set your deductible, the lower your insurance premiums will be.
What is a deductible?
The deductible is what you’ll pay before your insurance company will pay a claim.
Let’s say you file a claim to your insurance company for a $5,000 car repair bill. Your insurance covers you for that amount, but it includes a $500 deductible. This means you must pay $500 out of your own pocket before your insurance will cover the other $4,500.
Collision coverage in action
While cruising in your car, you miss a stop sign and ram into another vehicle in the intersection.
Both your car and the other vehicle are in rough shape, so repairs are definitely in order. Your liability insurance will cover the costs for the other party. Meanwhile, your collision insurance will help you with your costs — luckily so, as your bill comes out to $4,500. After you pay your $500 deductible, your insurance covers you for the rest of the $4,000.
Why should I buy collision coverage?
If you’re involved in an accident, your liability insurance will cover you for damage to someone else’s vehicle. However, you probably need to get your own car fixed too — which can be expensive if you’re paying out of your own pocket.
With collision coverage, you won’t be blindsided by a massive car repair bill. After you pay your deductible, your collision coverage will absorb the rest of the cost.
How much does collision coverage cost?
According to the Insurance Information Institute, collision coverage typically costs around $290 a year.
How do I buy collision coverage?
Your current insurer will offer collision coverage. Simply contact your car insurance provider and ask for more details.
It’s an excellent idea to add collision to your existing car insurance coverage. It will ensure that you don’t pay an arm and a leg for your car repair bill.
But don’t be afraid to shop around for the best price. You can find coverage that works for you by comparing providers using our insurance comparison tool.