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Massachusetts Car Insurance Coverage

Automobile insurance is comprised of a number of different components, many of which may become confusing to you. However, the array of these choices allows you the privilege of custom designing a policy that applies directly to your specific needs. With so many different options, it may be difficult to decipher what you do need and what you do not. Here is some basic information about Massachusetts car insurance that may lead you to making the proper policy decisions for yourself.

Each state in the country had designated its own laws and regulations concerning what they deem necessary for insurance coverage. Massachusetts is no exception to this group. One of the most basic laws in the country is the law of financial responsibility. Massachusetts maintains this as well. You must carry proof that you have insurance coverage with you, no matter where you go. There are two manners in which you can establish proof of financial responsibility. The first is that you can purchase car insurance through a traditional insurer. The second way consists of you obtaining a surety bond from your state's Department of Motor Vehicles. That is not always the most logical option, but it is available nonetheless.

You are mandated by federal and state law that you must carry car insurance. This is not an option. It is a law and must be obeyed. While each state devises its own laws concerning requirements, if you are found to be in violation of the laws, you will be punished. It is your responsibility to educate yourself about what the laws are in Massachusetts. Ignorance of the requirements cannot be used as an excuse in court. The penalties for violating the law can include fines, but repeat offenders can be subjected to the revocation of their license. If you are involved in a collision in which injuries are sustained by any party, it is possible that you could face jail time.

One of the components for car insurance in Massachusetts is the forms of coverage you are required to maintain. These forms of coverage are liability insurance, uninsured motorist protection insurance, and personal injury protection insurance. According to state law, a motorist must maintain minimum Bodily Injury Liability limits of $20,000 per injured person up to a total of $40,000 per accident. He or she must also have Property Damage Liability coverage with a minimum limit of $5,000. This basic coverage is often referred to as 20/40/5 coverage with 20/40 UM limits. As a motorist, you are also required to maintain $8,000 worth of personal injury protection insurance.

Massachusetts operates under what is known as a no fault system when it comes to dealing with automobile collisions. According to its varying definitions, the basics of a no fault system are described as any form of a contract with an insurance provider in which the policy holder is indemnified for potential losses by his or her insurance provider. It does not generally matter who is considered to be at fault in the accident. A policy holder is reimbursed by their car insurance provider regardless of who caused the collision. On the downside, the insured is denied the right to attempt to recoup financial loss from another party through the court system. It should be noted, however, than an exception can be made to this rule if the financial and physical losses of a party are considered to be extraordinary.

The primary aim of Massachusetts in following a no fault system is to lower the premiums cost for a policyholder by removing the option of navigating the court system. The system is supposed to be more efficient in providing quick reimbursement of expenses for a motorist. Each driver's insurance company is only financially responsible for their insured party. It supposedly allows the at fault driver's insurance company to recoup their financial losses as well by reclassifying their insured policyholder as a high risk driver. Therefore, they are able to charge considerably higher premiums.

The critics in Massachusetts who argue against the use of a no fault system state that it does not punish reckless or heedless drivers enough. Typically, the only punishment an at-fault driver will suffer from is increased premiums and reclassification as a high risk driver. There are no potential settlements to be incurred from a jury. It is also maintained by these detractors that genuine victims in a collision are unable to seek adequate amounts of compensation under a no fault system. Those who are in favor of a no fault system counter argue that a collision is unavoidable in the lifespan of a motorist. Therefore, an at-fault driver should not be punished beyond the troubles they incur due to the accident. They also argue that the marinating of liability insurance causes guilty parties to be protected from restitution that they should otherwise have to pay. However, in areas that have a higher risk for automobile collisions, a no fault system allows for cheaper car insurance rates than a more traditional system (i.e. the Tort system).

Despite the arguments for and against the no fault system, a motorist must determine what additional sorts of insurance coverage he or she wishes to purchase. If you own a vehicle with an outstanding balance on it, you will be required to maintain collision insurance. This form of coverage assists you in paying for the repairs your vehicle may need after an accident. Minus your deductible, your insurance company will pay for the remainder of the balance for your repairs. However, the monetary amount that an insurance company will provide towards repairs will not exceed the maximum monetary amount listed on your policy or the current market value of your vehicle, whichever comes first.

Comprehensive insurance is an optional form of coverage. It acts as a supplement to collision insurance. Comprehensive insurance provides for the cost of repairs to your vehicle after it has been damaged by a crime or an act of nature. GAP insurance is another popular form of insurance coverage. If your car is totaled in an accident, GAP insurance will pay the remaining balance of the loan after your insurance company has made a settlement on their perceived value of the vehicle.

After you have decided what forms of coverage are necessary by law, you must take stock of your assets in order to determine what your personal needs for automobile insurance are. For example, while a new car may benefit from collision insurance, it may not be required for an older car. Because a car depreciates over time, maintaining collision insurance on an older vehicle may not be the most feasible financial decision. If you need to determine the value of your vehicle, you can reference resources, like the Kelly Blue Book Value or NADA value, or talk with an automobile dealer. You will also need to determine if you should add services, like roadside assistance, to your policy.

Automobile insurance does not come cheaply to any motorist. However, it is possible to fully comply with the law without breaking the confines of your budget. By educating yourself about your car insurance needs in Massachusetts, you will be able to tailor a policy to your specific needs. Many consumers believe that an insurance company predetermines the rates that they will pay for car insurance. Therefore, the do not see a need to shop around for different pricing. However, this is simply not true. By engaging price comparison techniques on the policy you require, you can potentially accumulate a substantial amount of money.

 

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