Vehicle insurance is one of those things that you love it when you need it and hate paying the premium when you never use it. Nonetheless, it is required all around the world. And it makes sense to protect yourself from liability and from the extreme costs if you do wreck your vehicle. Let’s compare what’s required in the USA and UK and then identify characteristics of companies you may want to do business with.
Car Insurance in USA
Vehicle insurance in the USA differs by each state. The minimum in most states is liability insurance. Using three numbers such as 20/40/10, identifies three specific policy limits – bodily injury per person/bodily injury per accident/property damage limit…in that order in thousand dollars. Other types of insurance includes collision and comprehensive; medical payment; personal injury and no-fault; uninsured and underinsured; umbrella insurance; and, rental, towing, and total replacement insurance. To find out what’s required in each specific state, check with the state’s insurance regulator. Some states, like Missouri, have informative videos to list the requirements.
Car Insurance in the UK
Third party insurance as it is called in the UK is the bare minimum. When you have the minimum amount of insurance, you are protecting your liability if you cause damage to a another car, person, animal, or property. But don’t think about getting your car’s costs reimbursed…you will need additional insurance to protect your investment. Something very important to note is that if you own a vehicle you are responsible for providing insurance on it EVEN if you are not the driver. You own it, you insure it. For more information about motor vehicle insurance in England, Wales, and Scotland, check out the Gov.UK guide to vehicle insurance. If you need information specific to Northern Ireland, check out NIDirect.Gov.UK.
Finding an Insurance Company
What characteristics should you look for when shopping for auto insurance? You have lots of choices. Find an agent or broker that takes the time to explain the policy, complete annual reviews of your needs, and suggests ways that you can save money. One characteristic that I feel is important is to be able to talk to a person. In today’s age of technology and cost saving measures by some companies it seems that talking to a live person is becoming scarce. In the UK, one company – Sky Insurance – makes their mission statement about actually listening to customers to make personalized recommendations for their customers. Getting recommendations from friends and colleagues is also a great idea. Learn about each insurers’ services and then make a decision.
About the Blogger
Michael Gray is co-author of Auto Upkeep – a basic car care curriculum used by over 500 schools and thousands of homeschoolers in the United States and Canada. You can become a “Fan” of Auto Upkeep at Facebook.com/AutoUpkeep.