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  Common Questions About Auto Insurance
  • What is insurance?
    Insurance is a way of spreading financial risks among large numbers of people. You pay a fee (premium) to an insurance company for the right to share in funds set aside to pay your costs in certain pre-defined circumstances.
  • Do I have to buy Auto Insurance?
    Most states require you to carry a minimum amount of liability coverage in your automobile insurance policy. Many states have "no-fault" auto insurance systems; in other states, coverage for medical costs for you and your passengers is optional. Coverage for damage to your car is optional.
  • How much will my insurance cost?
    Prices vary widely. The type of car you drive, your driving record, your age, your sex, where you live and how much you drive usually affect cost. You may also qualify for various discounts.
  • Can I be added on to my parents' Auto Insurance?
    If you drive a family car, you can be added to your parents' policy. However, the cost of the policy will increase. (Some companies insure young drivers only on a family policy.) If you have your own car, your parents' company may sell you a separate policy but at a different rate than your parents. New drivers seeking their own insurance frequently are referred to state-run insurance pools, known as "assigned risk plans," where the cost of insurance is higher.
  • Do I have to be a certain age to buy my own insurance?
    No. However, you must have a valid driver's license. Also, in many states you must be 18 before you can own a car without an adult's name on the auto registration.
  • How often do I have to renew my insurance?
    Auto insurance policies usually last six months. Some last one year. You will receive a notice when it is time to renew your insurance.
  • Will my rates go up or will I lose my insurance if I get into an accident or get a ticket?
    If you are not at fault in an accident, your insurance should not be affected. If you are at fault, get a ticket for a serious violation (such as drunk driving), or are involved in an expensive property damage claim (such as crashing into a tree), the company will consider that when setting the price for your next insurance policy. Your rates for the current policy won't be affected.