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Virginia Farm Bureau Information Center

Decoding Auto Insurance Lingo

Decoding Auto Insurance Lingo

Auto Insurance can be difficult to understand. Before you shop around for auto insurance make sure you understand all your coverage options. For more information on decoding Auto Insurance lingo talk to your local Virginia Farm Bureau Insurance agent.

Liability Insurance/Coverage

This is the foundational auto insurance that pays out when your car causes damage to someone or something else. It’s usually written as a series of three numbers, such as 25/50/20, which are your coverage amounts in thousands of dollars.

Bodily Injury Coverage: Covers injuries to the person in the other car 
The first number ($25,000 in the example) is how much your policy will pay for each person injured in an accident. 
The second number ($50,000) is your policy’s cap per accident.

Property Damage Coverage: The third number is how much your policy will pay for property damage caused, such as another vehicle or a telephone pole ($20,000).

Collision Coverage

This picks up where liability insurance leaves off. It covers your own car when you cause an accident or hit a stationary object.

Comprehensive Coverage

This covers damage to your car not caused by a collision. You need comprehensive coverage to cover things like fire, theft, vandalism, weather-related damage, and deer that come out of nowhere.

Medical Expense Benefit

Comprehensive and liability insurance don’t cover you or your passengers in an accident. Medical Expense Benefit can offset your health insurance deductible and pays out for your passengers if necessary. It’s also an added buffer if you’re liable in an accident that causes serious injuries.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage: Sometimes the other guy’s liability insurance in’t enough to repair/replace the damage he caused. This coverage can help make up the difference, and is a requirement in the state of Virginia.

Deductible

If you’re in an accident, you’ll pay a predetermined amount-—your deductible-—before your insurance coverage kicks in. Generally, a higher deductible means a lower premium.

Premium

This is the price you agree to pay in exchange for insurance coverage. In other words, your regular insurance bill.

 



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