Owning and operating an automobile entails responsibilities that go beyond careful driving. Maintaining an adequate level of automobile insurance is one of those responsibilities. Automobile insurance is important for several reasons and this article will examine some of those.
One of the main reasons drivers should maintain automobile insurance is that most states simply require that they do so. The vast majority of states within the U.S. require minimum levels of insurance before a vehicle is considered legal to be driven on a road. Drivers who are caught without this insurance risk having their vehicle impounded by the police and risk facing heavy fines once the case goes to court. In some instances, they may even lose their driving privileges for a period of time.
A second reason for maintaining automobile insurance is that it protects you from personal liability should you be an accident. If you are in an accident and it is shown that you are at fault and someone is injured or killed in that accident, you can be held personally responsible for the costs of medical bills if a person is injured and substantial monetary awards if a person is killed. These types of monetary disbursements can literally ruin you and your financial status. Without insurance, you could be forced to sell your home, sell your automobile, and release any other assets that you may have in order to pay off the award. Depending on the amount of the award levied against you, you might easily spend the rest of your life paying these off.
The third reason automobile insurance is important happens when you are in an accident that does not involve bodily injury to someone but does involve damage to another vehicle or some other type of property. Again, if you are found at fault you may be required to pay for the damages that occurred with the other person’s vehicle. Damages can be either minor or major, but, regardless, you can be held responsible for making good on them. This holds true with other property as well.
If you were in an accident where you, for example, ran into the front of a home, you could be held responsible for those damages to the home. This can include anything from a fence, to the yard you drove through, to the wall you crashed into.
Shopping for automobile insurance is easy today, and much of that work can be done online. It is always a good idea to do some comparison shopping before signing up with one company over another. You will want to make sure that you are buying at least the minimum amount of automobile insurance that is required for your state. However, you should also purchase the added protection that you will need should you be in an accident.
Automobile insurance is one of the most important types of insurance that most consumers will have. For this reason it is very important to have the level of coverage that you need and that you can afford.