Choosing the Right Car Insurance Company

There are many different car insurance companies to choose from, and most offer similar services and premiums. It can be hard to decide which one to go with—especially when they all promise cheap car insurance and superior service. Keep in mind that there some key factors that can help make the selection process a little easier. When comparing car insurance companies, keep these factors in mind:

Service: One of the most important factors determining your satisfaction with your insurance company will be service. The bottom line is that you should expect to have all your questions answered and your claims process in a fair and timely manner. However, it can be hard to know what kind of service to expect until you have a problem or need to file a claim, at which point it will be too late. So before you commit to a company, research their background and service history. You can start by looking into complaints that have been filed against the company with your state insurance department. Look online for customer reports and ask your friends for referrals. Companies can’t outrun their reputations, and if you do enough digging, you’ll find the truth.

Stability: You should have peace of mind that your insurance company has the financial stability to be able to pay for claims you file. Look for a company that has been in business for many years and has a strong financial history. To do this, you can check the performance of its stock and research financial news that involves the company.

Licensing: Never do business with an insurance company that is not licensed to do business in your state. If you ever have a problem with the company, you can seek restitution or assistance from your state insurance department. If you choose an unlicensed company, you have no such recourse.

Cost: Insurance rates will vary widely at times from one company to another, and they will be determined by a number of variables, including your age, driving record, and vehicle. When comparing costs, make sure you get at least three quotes. You can also check with your state insurance department, many of which issue publications that list what insurers charge for policies in different parts of your state.

Confidence: Finally, no matter the company’s reputation or its rate quote, there is one thing that you must have before deciding to do business with any company: Confidence. Was your experience with the company pleasant? Did you find the employees friendly and professional? Did you feel that all your questions were answered appropriately? Make sure you are comfortable with the company, its policies and its personnel before you sign on the dotted line.

Canceling Your Auto Insurance Policy

If you feel you are paying too much for auto insurance every month, you may want to switch companies. In order to do this, you need to first cancel your existing policy. You shouldn’t feel like you have to be loyal to a company if you don’t think they are providing the best service you can get. If you have researched online for cheap auto insurance rates, then you’ve taken a valuable step toward saving money every month.

Here are a few simple steps that you will need to take to cancel your existing auto insurance policy, for whatever reason.

1. Call or email your insurance provider

You should know before you contact your provider when you wish to cancel your policy, and give them this date. Once they know the date of cancelation you can move forward with the other steps. Do not try to let your policy lapse, as your insurance provider will continue billing you during this time, and you will still be considered responsible for these payments. In addition, if you allow your policy to lapse, the insurance provider may contact the DMV and notify them of this lapse. This may result in penalties and further complications for you.

Procedures for canceling a policy vary among different insurance providers; many will want you to sign a form that officially terminates your policy agreement, and others may only require a phone call or letter. If you have a remaining premium, you may still be required to pay for it, although some providers allow you to pay a cancelation fee. You should always read the fine print on your insurance policy contract before canceling.

2. Alert the DMV

After you have canceled your policy with your auto insurance provider, you need to contact the state department of motor vehicles and alert them to this cancelation. You might have to pay a fine if your new insurance policy has not yet taken effect. Check your state’s laws and regulations regarding policy cancelation. If you cancel an old policy and are still in possession of a vehicle, you need to have a new policy in place.

3. Check for Refunds

Sometimes, if you cancel a policy, you can get a refund; other times, you may have to carry out the term on your contract. Always ask your provider if you are eligible for a refund.
With just a few simple steps, you can move from a bad policy to a new one, and that will get you one step closer to cheap car insurance premiums. Even if you have insurance, you should check out our free quote finder. It could lead you to even more savings.

Carrying Current Car Insurance

Your current auto insurance plays a large part in what kind of rates you will find if you change auto insurance plans. Make sure that you stay covered, and don’t let your policy lapse. If you are caught driving without insurance you could face license suspension and fees, and higher auto insurance quotes in the future. Financially, you could set yourself back substantially tomorrow if you don’t carry auto insurance today.

Driving while not insured also carries great legal risks. If you are in a tort state, and you are found at fault in an accident, you could be sued for the expenses accrued by the medical payments and car damages of the other motorist. In essence, if you don’t have insurance, you are responsible for paying for the other driver’s injuries or car damage out of pocket. If the collision causes serious injuries to the other driver, you could be faced with years of rehabilitation therapy bills, lost wage reimbursement, and doctor visits. Just think, for a minute, about the cost of medical procedures. This is enough to send most people into bankruptcy.

Always check your state laws when it comes to buying car insurance. Purchasing the minimum amount of liability will protect you, but it may not be enough if you are in a serious collision. If you are caught driving without insurance you will have seriously tarnished your driving record, and as a result, will have a hard time purchasing a new car or finding a new insurance plan.

As you can see, driving without insurance is never worth it. If you are worried that you need to find cheap car insurance, just take a look around online. The best way to find affordable rates is to compare quotes from different companies. In the end, you are protecting your future.

Proof of Insurance

In most states you are legally required to have car insurance. If you are pulled over by an officer of the law for any reason, you need to provide proof of insurance at that time, or you will face penalties such as fines, license suspension, and even jail time.

Most importantly, if you are in an accident, you will need insurance if you are found at fault. If you do not have insurance, you will most likely have to pay for the damages sustained by the other person’s car, as well as for any medical bills that person might have as a result. If the person you hit is seriously injured, you could end up paying for a lifetime physical therapy. In short, if you don’t have insurance, you will face financial ruin.

In order to drive, you need to have proof of financial responsibility. For every state, there are different laws regarding the amount of liability insurance you need to carry. Most people show proof of financial responsibility via an insurance policy, although some may also post a bond or deposit. There are two ways you can show financial responsibility outside of purchasing auto insurance, and they include:

• Surety Bond: A driver secures this bond through the state.

• Cash Deposit: A driver places a cash deposit of up to $100,000 with the state treasurer or DMV.

If you choose to use a surety bond or a cash deposit, you must carry a certificate proving this with you while you are driving—at all times. This is your “proof” of insurance.

In order to drive, you must carry insurance. You must also have proof of insurance to purchase a new vehicle, or to register a vehicle.
If you are involved in an accident and are unable to provide proof of insurance, you may face steep penalties like fines, suspension of registration and license suspension. Not to mention possible time in jail. Ask yourself, is it worth it? A few minutes online is all it takes to compare quotes from different car insurance companies, and you can find cheap car insurance today.

Driving Without Insurance

Don’t try to channel your inner James Dean and buck all the rules when it comes to driving. Unless you want to end up in jail or penniless, you cannot drive without insurance. Not only is it the law; it just makes good sense.

Almost all states have laws requiring liability insurance. Even if there are a few who don’t, all states do have laws requiring proof of financial responsibility. So if you decide to play it cool and don’t want to buy car insurance, if you get in an accident, you must still show proof of sufficient financial assets to be able to pay a claim. Depending on the severity of the accident, this could add up fast.

Imagine you total a brand new Jaguar, and four passengers inside are severely injured and unable to work for months. If you don’t have insurance, there goes your house. If you don’t have the financial collateral to show financial responsibility, you will be legally required to be auto insurance. Maybe you lose cool points, but you save your check book and your house.

Auto insurance is designed to protect your property and your assets. But don’t think that you can get by with the bare minimum. Most policies have a minimum of $10,000 in liability. Unless you manage to maintain a near saintly driving record that is dotted by little more than the occasional parking lot bump up, the chances are high that claims from an auto accident will soar far past $10,000. With minimum insurance protection, you’re liable for the rest. Most insurance companies and consumer protection groups say that you should purchase at least $300,000 in  property damage liability and $100,000 in bodily insurance liability coverage.

Here’s another reason to purchase sufficient insurance coverage: Even if you do manage to maintain that near saintly driving record, you can’t control what other drivers on the road are going to do. You could find yourself in a serious bender on a rainy night, or the victim of a hit-and-run that has just totaled your car. If the other driver does not have insurance coverage, or if there is a hit and run and you don’t know who to pursue for compensation, you can protect yourself by having the appropriate insurance coverage.

Forget cool and do what it takes to ensure your protection: Buy insurance. If you want to find cheap car insurance, use our quote finder today!

How Much Coverage You Should Buy

The minimum amount of coverage that you need is not actually up to you. Almost every state has requirements for minimum liability insurance coverage.

Once you have made sure that you have at least the minimum coverage requirements, you should consider how much more coverage you will need. Unless you are involved in nothing more than a small fender bender, you can almost guarantee that the total cost of damages to your car and the other person involved in the accident will exceed the state’s minimum coverage requirements. Even if you’re a near perfect driver with a sparkling record, you can never guarantee what other drivers will do on the road, so you should make sure you’re protected. If you are found liable for more than your insurance covers, or if you are hit by an uninsured driver, you could have to pay the remaining damages out of pocket.

To determine how much coverage you need, talk with your insurance agent about recommended liability limits or an umbrella or excess liability policy, which will pay for damages after your basic coverage is exhausted. These policies usually cost only about $200 to $300 per year, but they can offer millions of dollars in coverage. That’s a lot of protection and a lot of peace of mind!

Before you start looking at another company to extend your insurance coverage, make sure you always inquire with your current insurance company first. It will be much easier to extend coverage with a company with whom you have an established history.
Beyond liability coverage, you should also consider collision and comprehensive coverage for added protection. Coverage limits for these policies will be non-negotiable as limits will be based on the actual cash value of your car and the cost of repairing it.

Finally, no matter what limits you choose or what policies you select, you will have to decide on a deductible to determine your final premium amount and your monthly rates. Your deductible is how much you must first pay for damages before your insurance company will pay the rest of the damages. Deductibles are usually $500 to $1,000, and the higher your deductible, the lower your premium will be. Don’t be tempted to make your deductible as high as you can to lower your monthly bill: You will have to pay it first if you get in an accident, so only select a deductible for an amount that you have readily available in your savings.

Buying car insurance can be a hassle, but it is worth it. Get cheap car insurance by searching online for the perfect quote.