One of the most common requests we receive as insurance agents from clients seeking auto insurance, is a quote for ‘full coverage’. What does that even mean? I have been writing auto insurance in California for over 31 years and can’t answer that because I have never seen a policy that is ‘legally’ referred to or called ‘full coverage’.
Herein lies one of the biggest issues that consumers face when purchasing insurance. Many of the terms people use have different meanings to different people and have been thrown around for ages with no real meaning aligned with them.
If you truly wanted an auto insurance policy with ‘the works’ so to speak, it would include towing, rental reimbursement, gap coverage, replacement cost on the vehicle, theft of personal property, trip interruption, original equipment from manufacturer, lock re-key coverage, additional stereo, video and electronics, waiver of deductible, claims deductible credit, accident forgiveness, and loss of use due to theft.
Now that, I would argue, is a ‘full coverage’ auto insurance policy. But I will also tell you that 99%; ok, probably 100% of people wanting to purchase an auto insurance policy are not thinking of, looking for, or willing to pay for, all those endorsements.
It’s easy for television commercials to tell you to simply change to them to solve all your insurance woes by have their ‘unique’ policy, but what they don’t tell you is that every one of the coverages I’ve highlighted above have an additional price tag attached to them.
When we have these discussions with ‘full coverage’ shoppers, we find that many times they only want liability along with physical damage including collision and comprehensive. Some may want to add towing and sometimes rental reimbursement, but many times they look at the cost of those endorsements and decide to self-insure, figuring the chance of using those coverages is too rare to pay for it every year.
Another term that we still hear despite it being said wrong so many times is pl&pd; although many who use this term just know it’s the minimum they are required to purchase to legally drive on California roads.
Personal Liability and Property Damage (hence the pl&pd), are not accurate as you must also have Personal Injury Protection which is made up of Medical and Wage Loss; in order to legally drive.
Regardless how you ask for coverage, know that we are here to help you understand your exposures, the cost of coverages to protect those, and the implications of self-insuring or not purchasing certain coverages. At Ted Hamm Insurance Agency, we really are all about educating our clients to make the decisions they believe are best for their families and their insurance budget.
If you would like assistance with any of your personal, business or life insurance needs, we are simply a phone call, email, text or appointment away.