Auto Insurance Austin

Auto Insurance Austin

Stanley Insurance Agency is an Austin-based insurance company offering various auto insurance coverages since 1983. We are also a licensed Progressive Insurance Agent who can provide you with well-known and trusted insurance coverage. If you own and drive a vehicle, Texas law says you need some form of auto insurance. How much and what kind differs from state to state. But no matter what the law says, you have to be insured because it could be costly if you get into an accident. If you need auto insurance in the service area, contact us today to speak with one of our friendly insurance agents.

An auto insurance policy can cover:

  • Bodily Injury Liability
  • Personal Injury Coverage
  • Property Damage Liability
  • collision coverage
  • Comprehensive Coverage
  • Uninsured motorist coverage

Texas law requires people who drive in Texas to pay for accidents they are responsible for causing. Most people do this by purchasing liability insurance. Liability insurance pays to repair or replace the other driver’s car and pays for other people’s medical expenses when you are at fault in an accident.

If you purchase insurance to comply with the state’s financial responsibility law, you must purchase at least the minimum amount. As of 2014, the minimum liability limits are $30,000 for each person injured, up to a total of $60,000 per accident, and $25,000 for property damage per accident. This basic coverage is called 30/60/25 coverage.

Due to car prices and the high cost of medical care, the minimum amounts may not be enough to pay all of the other driver’s fees if you are in an accident. Other drivers could sue you for the difference. Consider purchasing more than the fundamental limits to help protect yourself financially.

Liability insurance does not pay to repair or replace your vehicle or treat your injuries. You may want to consider purchasing other types of coverage – such as medical, collision, and comprehensive – to pay for these expenses.

Proof of Financial Responsibility

When you buy an auto policy, your insurance company will send you proof of insurance card. Have your proof of insurance card ready to show when:

  • requested by a police officer
  • you’re in an accident
  • register your car or renew your registration
  • obtain or renew your driver’s license
  • have a vehicle inspected.

Penalties for violating state financial responsibility include laws for fines, jail time, or both.

Know your rights and understand your insurance policy

Texas has a Consumer Bill of Rights for auto insurance. Your insurance company must send you a copy of your policy. Please read it, so you know what is covered.

TexasInsurance

TexasSure is a program that helps various Texas government agencies electronically verify that you have automobile insurance.

Among the agencies that use Texas Insurance are:

  • The Texas Department of Public Safety.
  • Sheriff and police departments.
  • Vehicle registration offices.

If there are problems with your Texas auto insurance information, you may receive one of the following notices:

Unmatched Notices – According to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), less than 1% of the insured’s drivers cannot be matched with their registered car in the TexasSure system. You will receive this notice if you are on record as having car insurance, but the insurance does not match your vehicle.

Uninsured Notices – You will receive this notice if you have a registered vehicle with no car insurance record for that car.

Auto Insurance Coverages

Depending on the types of coverage you have, auto insurance pays for car repair or replacement, medical expenses, car rental, towing, court costs, and other costs.

Read your policy carefully because coverages vary. Pay special attention to what is covered by your policy and to the exclusions, which list things your policy doesn’t cover. The following are common limitations or exclusions that you may find in your policy:

  • Name controller. Some policies only cover household residents who are specifically named in the policy.
  • Driver excluded. Excludes coverage for persons specifically named in an endorsement that may be installed on your policy.
  • Business use. Excludes coverage if you use your car for business, like pizza or newspaper delivery.
  • Racing. Excludes coverage if you use your car in a racing event.
  • Intentional acts. Excludes coverage for deliberate losses.

The main page of your policy – call to declarations or December page – shows the exact name of your insurance company, your policy number, and the amount of each of your coverages and deductibles.

Note: The deductible is the amount you must pay before the insurance company pays. For example, if you have a $1,000 claim and a $300 deductible, the insurance company will automatically deduct $300 from your paid amount.

Many insurance companies use the Texas Personal Automobile Policy, a standardized policy form that offers eight types of coverages. The companies sell other policies that the Texas Department of Insurance has approved. Although your ranges and policy terms may differ, this summary can help you understand the eight basic coverages.

1. Liability coverage (Basic liability coverage satisfies state financial responsibility requirements.)

What it’s worth: The following expenses, up to your policy’s dollar limit, for people in the other car involved in an accident that you or someone covered by your policy caused:

  • medical and funeral expenses, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering
  • car repair or replacement costs
  • car rental while the other driver’s car is being repaired
  • punitive damages awarded by a court.

Liability insurance also pays your attorney’s fees if someone sues you because of the accident. If you are arrested after an accident, liability insurance will pay up to $250 for bail.

Who covers:

  • you and your family members. (Family members include anyone living in your household related to you by blood, marriage, or adoption. This includes your spouse, children, parents-in-law, foster children, and foster children.)
  • other people driving your car with your permission
  • family members who attend school away from home
  • Spouses living elsewhere during a martial separation may be covered.

You and your family members could be covered when you drive someone else’s car – including a rental car – but it’s not a car you don’t own but have regular access to, such as a company vehicle.

Some policies do not cover other residents of your home, including family members, unless they are specifically named in the policy. Your policy’s declarations page should list the names of all the policy covers.

2. Collision (damage to your vehicle) Coverage

If you still owe money on your car, your lender will require that you have comprehensive collision coverage.

What it’s worth: The cost of repairing or replacing your car after an accident. You will only receive your car’s actual cash value amount, less the deductible. Actual cash value is the market value of a car like yours without damage.

Who is covered: You, your family, the passengers in your car, and others driving your vehicle with your permission.

3. Comprehensive (other than collision) coverage

If you still owe money on your car, your lender will require that you have comprehensive collision coverage.

What it’s worth: The cost to replace or repair your car in the event of theft or damage from fire, vandalism, hail, falling objects, or an event other than a collision. Comprehensive coverage also pays for a rental car or other temporary transportation if your vehicle is stolen. Your policy will not pay for carjacking unless you report it to the police.

Payment is limited to the actual cash value of your car, less the deductible.

4. Medical Coverage Payments

What it pays: Your medical and funeral expenses resulting from accidents, including an accident with a pedestrian or bicyclist.

Who covers: You, your family, and the passengers in your car, regardless of who caused the accident.

5. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Coverage

What it’s worth: Same as paid medical coverage, plus 80 percent of lost earnings and the cost of hiring a caregiver for an injured person.

Who covers: You, your family, and the passengers in your car, regardless of who caused the accident.

An insurance company must offer you $2,500 in PIP, but you can buy more. If you do not want PIP, you must refuse it in writing.

6. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

It pays your expenses from an accident caused by an uninsured driver, an underinsured motorist, or a hit-and-run driver. It also pays for personal property that was damaged in your car.

There is an automatic $250 deductible, which means you must pay the first $250 of expenses yourself before the company starts paying.

There are two types of coverage:

Bodily injury pays for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, disfigurement, and permanent or partial disability. There is no deductible with this type.

Property damage pays for auto repairs, a rental car, and damage to items in your vehicle.

Who is covered: You, your family, the passengers in your car, and others driving your vehicle with your permission.

Insurance companies must offer coverage. If you don’t want it, you must reject it in writing.

7. Towing and Labor coverage

What it’s worth: Towing charges when your car can’t be driven. It also pays for labor, such as changing a flat tire or jump-starting the battery.

8. Rental Reimbursement Coverage

What you pay: A set daily amount for a rental car if your car is stolen or repaired. Your company only pays for repairs caused by an event – like fire or theft – that your policy covers.

Other Coverage

You can purchase other coverages for an additional premium to cover items in your car, new or extra vehicles, rental cars, or driving in Mexico or other foreign countries.

stereo equipment

Your policy will not pay for CDs, MP3 players, cell phones, citizen band radios, or stereos not installed in your car.

New or additional cars

If you buy another car, your policy may automatically cover you with certain limitations. Read your policy or ask your agent to find out if you have this coverage.

Insurance companies must give additional cars the same coverage as your car with the most range. For example, suppose you have two vehicles – one with liability-only coverage and one with liability, collision, and comprehensive coverages – and purchase a third car. In that case, the third car will automatically have liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage.

Insurance companies will give a replacement vehicle the same coverage as the car it replaced. For example, if you trade in an older car that only has liability coverage, the new car will automatically have only liability coverage.

Be sure to tell your insurance company within 30 days that you have added or replaced a car and what coverages you want. You could lose coverage on an additional or replacement car if you wait longer than report it to your insurance company.

By aamritri

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