The Ten Questions to Ask


What’s their process for
reporting a claim?

Procedures can vary with car insurance companies and there are time
limitations as to how soon a claim must be reported in order for it to be
covered. Is there are local number for you to call or does the company
prefer you use an 800-number? They should have somewhere for you to
call for service 24/7.


What incidents or behavior will
make your premium go up or down?

Do they offer a safe driver discount? Will one accident make your car
insurance premium go up? Are their six-month or yearly reviews that
may affect how much you pay?


Are there multiple-policy
discounts available?

If an insurance company offers other types of policies, such as
homeowners, renters, boat, life and other such coverage, you may
be able to save money by having all of your policies with that one



Is there a local office that you
can contact?

Although a much of your business will be done over the phone or online,
there’s something comforting about having an office that you can call and
visit. Local insurance providers make it their business to create connections
with their clients and calling them with a question can save time.


Are original manufacturer
parts covered?

Some companies will cover accident repairs but won’t pay for
manufacturer’s parts. Instead, they offer to cover only generic parts
or the price of such a part, leaving you to pay the rest.


Can you choose your own
repair shop?

The opportunity to choose your own repair shop may or may not be
offered. This varies quite a bit, and depending on what state in which
you reside, a car insurance company may not be allowed to restrict
where you take your car to get it repaired.


If your car is totaled how
much will you be reimbursed?

This can vary a lot too. The fact is once a vehicle is driven off a car lot it
loses value and if you have a car loan and are in an accident, the
insurance company may not pay the full amount of the loan but, rather,
what they deem to be the actual worth. This can be thousands less than
you owe and you’re stuck with a loan to payoff and no car.


If abroad are you covered when
driving a rental?

You may or may not be..

If you travel, then make sure you are covered


What are your liability
limits and deductibles?

This is basic information as far as car insurance goes but the truth is
some people have no idea. Know what you are paying for and what is


What are your payment options?

What methods or payment will the car insurance company accept and
what type of payment schedule do they offer—monthly, full payment or
something in between? You may be able to save some money by
making a full payment.

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