When looking at insurance packages, a lot of people might see comprehensive coverage and full coverage options and think, “Those words mean pretty much the same thing, so those two plans are the same, right?” Well, not quite. While full coverage plans include coverage for incidents covered under comprehensive insurance, the two plans are very different. To get the best coverage for your needs, it’s important to understand what each plan covers.
Comprehensive coverage handles all the oddball occurrences that even the most prepared drivers can’t plan for, including things like falling objects such as tree branches, collisions with large animals, cracked windshields due to road debris, acts of God, and natural disasters. The wide range of damages covered is where comprehensive coverage gets its name, though there are things that aren’t covered. The biggest thing comprehensive coverage doesn’t cover is collisions, or being in any kind of auto accident involving another vehicle.
To understand what’s not covered by comprehensive insurance, it’s important to know about collision coverage. If comprehensive covers all the unpredictable damage that happens, collision handles the damage that can be linked to another party—namely, another driver. Collision will cover your damages in the event you’re in an accident with another vehicle or a fixed object—essentially, when your vehicle makes contact with property owned by another party. You’ll of course have a deductible, which, depending on your policy, can range anywhere from around $200–$1500 on average. The good news is that if the other party is liable, your insurance company can pursue that individual for your deductible as well as the portion of your damage he or she is responsible for.
Full coverage essentially combines both of these types of coverage under the same plan. Sometimes there’s a slight rate discount for purchasing full coverage instead of buying either plan individually. Full coverage fully insures your vehicle no matter what happens out on the road—hence the term “full coverage.”
It’s important to note that many of these coverages have exclusions, which are usually specific to each auto insurance San Diego company. While there are some nuanced differences, the common exclusions include:
- Involvement in a criminal act at the time of the loss
- Use of the vehicle as a livery service or for street racing at the time of the loss
- Intentional damage to the vehicle
- Damage to property owned by the insured (if you hit your own car, you can’t make a liability claim)
- Maintenance or use of the vehicle for business purposes (you’d need a commercial policy to insure the vehicle in this case)
- Nuclear explosions
- Biochemical radiation
- War (declared or undeclared)
If the circumstances behind your damages fall under any of these exclusions, you’re unfortunately out of luck. Also, lying to your insurance company about how the damage came about (for example, claiming someone struck your vehicle when you actually struck a telephone pole) can result in your insurance company denying your claim.
Drivers who are searching for reliable, affordable auto insurance should reach out to the experienced professionals at Altra Insurance Services. In addition to auto coverage, we offer a variety of insurance products, including motorcycle, homeowners, and renters insurance. San Diego residents can call one of our friendly agents today at 619-474-6666 for a free quote.