Comprehensive insurance is an optional coverage you can add to your car insurance policy to protect you from events that are out of your control. Also known as “other than collision” or OTC, comprehensive is often paired with collision coverage. Comprehensive insurance coverage is simply another layer of protection that will help protect your investment.
What Does Comprehensive Insurance Cover?
Comprehensive covers a broad range of damages to your vehicle that are not the result of a collision with another vehicle or with an object. Some examples of damage covered by comprehensive include:
- Natural disasters
- Collision with an animal
Comprehensive covers unforeseen events, like tree limbs falling on your car or a broken windshield from a rock thrown up by a truck on the highway.
What is Not Covered Under Comprehensive Insurance?
Comprehensive coverage does not cover collisions, except with animals, which are considered out of your control. For example, if you swerve and hit a light pole because a dog ran out in front of your car, comprehensive will not cover your damage. Collision coverage will be used, and this is why it may be important to pair collision and comprehensive insurance coverage together.
Comprehensive insurance generally does not cover:
- Collisions with other vehicles
- Collisions with objects, such as poles or guardrails
Is Comprehensive Insurance Required?
Comprehensive is a supplementary, or optional, coverage. However, if you are leasing your vehicle of if you have a loan on your vehicle you will most likely be required to carry full insurance coverage. This includes comprehensive.
If your car is not under a loan or a lease, the decision to carry comprehensive insurance should be based on the value of your vehicle. The maximum payout for comprehensive insurance should your car be damaged will be the cash value of the car, minus your deductible. Therefore, if your car is worth $2000 and you have a $1000 deductible, the most you will receive is $1000. Compare that amount to your monthly premium payments to determine if your vehicle is worth protecting with comprehensive insurance.
How Much Does Comprehensive Insurance Coverage Cost?
Comprehensive coverage is based on your vehicle’s value and your own driving record. If you are in the high-risk category, you will pay more. But for most drivers, the cost of comprehensive insurance is reasonable and may be well worth it for the added protection.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, the average cost of comprehensive insurance in the U.S. is about $136 per year. This includes a high of $266 a year in the District of Columbia, and a low of $97 a year in Oregon.
Comprehensive insurance is such a versatile type of coverage, it’s hard to make the case for not carrying it. To find out how much comprehensive coverage will cost you, take just two minutes with InsuranceWins to get your auto insurance quote online.