YOU ASK:

Exactly what coverage can I get under a Personal Auto policy (PAP)?

WE ANSWER:

There are two main reasons why people seek to buy car insurance: first of all, they want liability protection in case they cause bodily injury and property damage to someone else. Secondly, people want coverage that will pay for any damage to their own automobiles.

The Personal Auto policy provides coverage for both exposures, and more.

PAP Coverages

Being a package policy, every Personal Auto policy can include a combination of different coverages. Typically, drivers are required to have at least basic liability auto coverage. These are the four basic coverages a PAP can consist of:

Part A - Liability Coverage

This is the most important part of a Personal Auto Policy as it protects the insured against liability claims by others. If the insured is found to be legally responsible for somebody's bodily injury or property damage incurred in a car accident, the liability auto coverage guarantees that it will settle claims. The named insured, their family, and anyone using the insured's car are considered to be covered under Part A of the PAP.

Part B - Medical Payments Coverage

Medical Payments coverage is optional, but it can only be acquired in addition to Part A Coverage. It promises to pay all the medical expenses incurred by the named insured or his/her family members involved in an auto accident, or by any person occupying the covered car of the named insured within three years of the crash. It does not, however, cover the medical expenses of the other party, which are the object of liability coverage.

Part C - Uninsured Motorists Coverage

Since the percentage of uninsured motorists keeps rising (it was roughly 15 percent in 2004, according to statistics), some people find purchasing Part C coverage very important. Uninsured Motorists coverage indemnifies the named insured for bodily injury if the insured has been involved in an accident with an uninsured, underinsured or a hit-and-run driver. Part C coverage is obligatory in some states, while in others drivers can opt out of Uninsured Motorists coverage.

Part D - Coverage for Damage to Your Auto

Part D coverage, also commonly referred to as Physical Damage coverage, protects the covered vehicle against damages caused by collision or causes other than collision. Other Than Collision auto insurance covers cars against direct or accidental perils, such as contact with a bird or animal, fire, hail or flood, theft, riots, missiles, vandalism, etc.

Each PAP can include specific endorsements, such as rental and towing coverage.

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