To know what “full coverage car insurance” is, you first need to understand that there is not really a true and uniformly agreed upon definition for the term. We know what you’re thinking. That can’t be the case. In reality, “full coverage car insurance” can mean different things to different people. You have probably heard the term from friends, family and maybe even the dealer where you bought your car. The truth is, it’s just a saying.
Understanding Full Coverage Car Insurance
Full coverage car insurance isn’t a specific type of insurance. Most commonly, Full Coverage is defined as a combination of coverages consisting of comprehensive and collision insurance in addition to the liability insurance that is required by the state. While most people will define it this way, there are also many who consider Full Coverage to mean exactly that, all the available coverages and limits that can be applied to a vehicle’s policy.
You can review coverage definitions in our Insurance Glossary. Briefly, liability insurance is the coverage that most states require for a vehicle to be operated on public roadways. It can be used to help pay for damages and injuries to another person and their property when you or a covered insured is deemed to be at fault for an accident.
Collision insurance helps to protect you financially when your insured vehicle is damaged in a collision. It may be used to help repair or replace your vehicle up to your policy limits regardless of fault. Comprehensive insurance helps protect you financially when your insured vehicle is damaged by a named peril other than collision. The most common named perils that comprehensive insurance may cover are fire, theft, vandalism, falling objects, natural disasters, riots, and animal damage.
It is important to note that both collision and comprehensive insurance require the insured person to first pay an agreed upon deductible from his or her policy before the insurance company can pay for the rest of the damages. As soon as the deductible is paid, the insurance company can cover payment for the appraised damage to the insured vehicle up to its policy limits.
Is Full Coverage Complete Protection?
All of that coverage is great, but remember that insurance policies often contain certain limits and exclusions. If you believe that you have full coverage, you may think that you are protected from things that you really are not. You may be surprised to find that you are not protected from an uninsured motorist hitting your vehicle or that your custom rims require special coverage (that you don't have) for aftermarket parts, for example.
Don’t let yourself be caught off guard because you thought you had full coverage. Check out the terms of your policy and your Declarations Page to see what specific coverage you have, and what you don’t have. Or you can always call one of our friendly representatives here at Infinity Insurance by dialing 1-800-INFINITY to make sure that you have a policy that fits your needs.