|Physical Damage To Your Automobile
When your vehicle is damaged you can file for a claim under your physical damage coverage. This coverage usually
consists of two parts: Comprehensive and Collision.
This usually covers your vehicle when it is damaged by something other than an accident. Fire, Theft, Vandalism,
Glass breakage, and weather related items such as Flood, Hurricane, Hail. Also hitting an animal goes under
comprehensive, however, if you swerve and miss the animal and then go off in a ditch and hit a fence or telephone
pole, then that would go under your collision.
This covers your vehicle when it is damaged in an accident. An accident can involve another vehicle or it can just
involve your vehicle alone. If you run off the road and hit a tree, that's an accident and it would go under your
collision. Same thing if you bump into a light pole while in a parking lot.
Your comprehensive and collision coverage will carry some sort of deductible. This is the portion of the claim that you
would be responsible for. Common deductible amounts are $100, $250, $500, and $1,000. There are sometimes
lower deductibles available particularly for glass damage. Most companies will waive your deductible if your
windshield can be repaired rather than replaced. This usually happens when there is just a small chip in the glass. If
the chip has spread across the windshield then usually the repair won't work and the whole glass needs to be
replaced. The higher the deductible, the lower your rate....conversely, the lower the deductible the higher your rate
A couple of options that are available under most policies are Rental and Roadside(Towing). If your car is damaged
in a covered claim then the Rental coverage is what will help pay for a rent car while yours is in the shop. Your
collision and comprehensive coverage do not automatically include this, (If your car is stolen then the company may
provide for a rent car under the comprehensive after 48 hours.). Also, the rental coverage does not provide
coverage if you are putting your vehicle in the shop for maintenance. The vehicle must be going to the shop due to
an accident or covered claim. Roadside usually covers if you have to have your car towed, battery jumped, vehicle
unlocked or run out of gas. If your company doesn't offer Roadside then it will usually offer what's called Towing &
Labor . While the Roadside coverage will send someone out to help you, the Towing & Labor coverage usually
reimburses you for an expense that you paid. They both will have limits as to what or how much they will pay.