When you’re involved in a Los Angeles car crash, you may find that you are in need of an auto accident attorney. But before you pick up the phone and call a reputable lawyer, you may want to take a closer look at your auto insurance policy.
We have gone into great detail below about a couple of car insurance necessities you should consider adding to your policy before you’re involved in a collision in LA, so you can better prepare for what to expect after an accident.
Gap Insurance for Financed Vehicles
Gap insurance is not a legal requirement of your auto insurance policy. In fact, only individuals who finance their car should consider adding gap insurance to their policy. When you’re involved in a collision, if your vehicle is totaled, the insurance company will only cover the value of the vehicle, not how much you owe on the car.
Vehicles depreciate in value as soon as you drive off the lot, and it’s quite possible that you owe more on the vehicle than it’s worth. Even if the insurer pays out the full value of the car, if you don’t carry gap insurance, you may find yourself stuck covering the rest of the amount of your loan. With gap insurance, if your car is totaled, the insurer will be compelled to pay off the loan in its entirety.
Rental Car Coverage
The severity of the damage to your car after you’ve been in a car accident will largely determine whether you’ll be able to continue driving your vehicle until it is repaired. But even if you can drive your car for now, the day of the scheduled repairs may require you to leave your vehicle at the shop.
In any case, if you do not carry rental car coverage on your auto insurance policy, the costs of your rental car, should you need one, will fall entirely on you. If you add rental car coverage to your auto insurance policy, your insurer should cover these expenses for you. Depending on where you live in Los Angeles, you could be stuck with an $800+ per week rental car cost without rental car coverage.
Collision and Comprehensive
Unless you finance your car, truck, SUV, or other motor vehicle, chances are, you are not legally obligated to carry collision and comprehensive on your vehicle. However, adding comprehensive and collision can make a significant difference in the outcome of your auto insurance claim.
Collision will provide you with coverage for damage caused to your vehicle in an accident, while comprehensive will cover damage caused to your vehicle for other things like natural disasters or theft. Generally speaking, you’ll have to pay a deductible, somewhere between $500 and $2000 depending on your auto insurance policy, and then your insurance company should cover the rest.
Without comprehensive and collision, you could wind up stuck with the costs of repairing or replacing your vehicle out of your own pocket.