Collision Versus Comprehensive Auto Insurance in New York

New York drivers must carry liability insurance on their vehicles of $25,000 per person bodily injury coverage, $50,000 for two or more people who have bodily injuries, and $25,000 for property damage. Choosing the coverage type that best suits your needs is entirely up to you, as long as it meets these state minimum requirements.

When discussing auto insurance or watching television advertisements, comprehensive and collision coverage are the two types we rely on the most to satisfy legal requirements and to protect ourselves. Often we purchase policies that combine both of these options and think nothing more of it until we have an accident. While similar, they don’t offer the same coverage for the same problems, so if you don’t understand how these policies work, allow us to clear it up.

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Collision Vs Comprehensive Auto Insurance

Insurance Agent Inspecting Car After Accident

Collision Coverage

When your vehicle collides with another object, collision coverage will pay for the damage repairs or, if totaled, give you the cash value if it’s a total loss. Specifically, this policy covers only your vehicle when you’re at-fault and hit another object. There are several scenarios in which collision coverage kicks in, including:

  • Your car damage after an accident that you caused
  • Damage from hitting an object with your car (guard rail, telephone pole, etc.)
  • Possible damage to your vehicle if hit by someone else

If someone else does hit you, you will need to pursue repairs through their liability insurance policy that has mandatory property damage coverage. If you’re underinsured or the other driver doesn’t carry a plan, you’ll have to go through your own coverage. These policies help crash victims repair or replace their cars reasonably quickly, and do not provide any relief to other drivers involved in the accident.

Comprehensive Coverage

When we read the phrase “acts of God” in our insurance paperwork, this describes how comprehensive coverage policies work. Vehicle damage received that doesn’t involve a collision is often unpredictable and unpreventable. Imagine a tree falling on your car, hail damage, or even vandalism, which are acts that comprehensive policies cover. Circumstances that qualify for comprehensive coverage include:

  • Natural disasters
  • Vandalism
  • Cracked windshield
  • Storm damage
  • Animal-related crashes
  • Theft
  • Falling trees, branches, and other objects

The unpreventable accidents that can happen to your car make comprehensive insurance an invaluable coverage policy to have at your disposal. If you don’t have this policy, and you have suffered damages or loss to your vehicle, all hope isn’t lost. The attorneys at The Barnes Firm understand that sometimes what appears to be an accident could involve someone else’s negligence, and we can help.

piggy bank with money under it and a wooden car on the table to demonstrate car insurance

Do I Need Collision and Comprehensive Insurance in New York?

a person showing a car insurance policy and pointing with a pen where to sign

While these coverage plans are not mandatory with your liability insurance, living in New York comes with certain risks. There are hundreds of thousands of drivers on the state’s roadways, a large population of wildlife waiting to cross your driving path, and the weather extremes, including hurricanes and blizzards. These factors alone create a case for carrying both collision and comprehensive policies in addition to your liability coverage.

Another situation where you may need to carry these policies is if you own a new car on which you still owe a significant sum on your loan. Lenders generally demand at least some type of a comprehensive plan to protect against the loss of the vehicle. Giving yourself peace of mind with the knowledge that your vehicle has solid financial protection is worth every penny.

Recognized New York Car Accident Attorneys

One never plans to have to use their car insurance policy, but when the time comes, it’s possible to not have enough coverage available, depending on the severity of the accident. You may experience injuries that far exceed the state bodily injury minimums, and the insurance company will still attempt to minimize the payout, regardless of your specific needs. Having a team of experienced auto accident attorneys by your side through this process will make your insurance investment worthwhile in the long-run.

The seasoned attorneys at The Barnes Firm have fought and won insurance claims for decades to get the compensation our clients counted on when paying for their policies. We understand how these big corporations work and fight tirelessly to get the relief you deserve. As recognized Super Lawyers, you can let us handle every aspect of your case without any money upfront so you can focus on healing. Contact us today to learn more and receive a free case evaluation.

The Barnes Firm (800) 800-0000