3 Types of Optional Auto Insurance That Are Probably Worth Buying

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  • Most states require drivers to buy liability insurance to protect accident victims.
  • There are other types of car insurance that drivers are not required to buy.
  • Motorists should seriously consider purchasing several types of optional coverage, including comprehensive and uninsured motorist coverages.

Drivers should consider getting this coverage even though it is not required.

In most states, motorists are required to buy liability insurance. This type of car insurance provides protection in case the policyholder causes an accident and injures other people or damages the property of others.

In addition to liability insurance, there are many other types of coverage drivers can buy when purchasing car insurance. While these other types of car insurance may be optional, motorists should seriously consider putting these three kinds of auto insurance in place.

1. Collision coverage

Collision coverage isn't required by state law but lenders may require it, so some motorists may not have a choice about buying it if they borrowed for their car.

Even for drivers with the option to either opt for collision coverage or opt out of it, it is often worth buying. That's because this is the type of auto insurance that would pay to repair or replace the policyholder's own vehicle in the event that a car accident occured.

Without collision coverage, if the policyholder became involved in a crash that wasn't caused by another motorist and thus covered by the other driver's liability policy, that policyholder would be out of luck as far as getting an insurance check. Paying out of pocket for expensive repairs or to buy a new car without any help from an insurance company could be financially devastating. Collision insurance ensures that doesn't happen.

2. Comprehensive coverage

Like collision insurance, comprehensive insurance is not required by state law but is often required by auto loan providers. But again, even motorists not mandated to buy it should seriously consider doing so.

Comprehensive coverage pays for any damages that result to a vehicle that aren't caused by a car accident. This could range from vandalism to theft to a tree falling on top of the vehicle and crushing it.

Without comprehensive coverage, any non-crash related source of loss would not be covered. This could again force the policyholder to personally pay for repair or replacement of a vehicle -- which could cost tens of thousands of dollars.

3. Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage

Finally, while a small number of states require uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, most do not. And this type of protection could be especially important because it can cover a wide variety of losses that happen after a crash occurs.

See, when another driver causes a car accident, that motorist's insurance is typically on the hook to pay for medical costs, lost wages, and property damage. But the problem is, sometimes drivers do not buy the liability insurance they need to pay for losses they cause. Accident victims who get into a crash with a driver who has too little insurance -- or none at all -- could end up not being able to get the other driver's insurer to pay.

In these circumstances, the crash victims could only turn to their own insurer for financial help if they have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. If they have this protection, they can recover damages the other driver's insurance should have paid for in cases when the at-fault motorist's coverage isn't sufficient.

Each of these types of insurance can save motorists from catastrophic financial damage, so it's worth looking into buying them.

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