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FAQ on buying insurance for your car
Q: Am I obliged to carry insurance coverage when driving my car?
A: Nearly all states have it as a legal requirement for drivers to carry liability auto coverage as a guarantee that the damages you deliver in a car accidents are paid for. Each state has a minimum amount of liability coverage that a driver must carry with his policy. And even the states that don't have vehicle insurance as a legal requirement oblige the driver to show proof that he has enough financial resources to pay for the caused damage. Any other types of insurance coverage, outside liability coverage are purely optional and can be purchased with respect to your personal insurance needs.
Q: Is insurance required before buying a new vehicle?
A: If that's your first vehicle, you will be required to have insurance coverage before even taking it from the dealer. Moreover, if you're using an auto loan to finance the purchase, you may be required to buy additional types of coverage besides liability. If you already have a car and are changing it to a new one or buying an additional vehicle, you have 14-30 days to report the changes to your insurance company.
Q: How can I get cheap car insurance?
A: Compare insurance quotes in order to see what other providers are offering, and if it turns out that you're overpaying - switch the provider. If your current rates are quite competitive, compared to other companies, see if you're taking advantage of all the discounts you can opt for.
When looking for a new car, always make sure that the make and model you are interested in provides cheap car insurance options. Some cars are a lot cheaper to insure than the others, ask your insurance agent to learn what cars are the most cost-effective from the insurance perspective.
Another way to get cheap car insurance, although a bit risky one, is to increase your deductibles. By raising the amount of out-of-pocket expenses you can afford before the policy kicks in you get lower premiums. And if you're driving an older vehicle that has a low market value, you may want to drop collision and comprehensive coverage as it takes depreciation of the car value into account.
You can also adjust the amounts of coverage your policy carries, although experts do not recommend decreasing them to the level of state minimums as it is usually not enough to pay for a serious accident.