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Ohio Car Insurance Basics

Car insurance is a necessity that is mandated by federal and state law in the United States. These states include Ohio. Ohio car insurance is required in order to protect you financially, in addition to protecting other motorists who are on the road. Regardless of what state you live in, you must be able to show proof of financial responsibility. Ohio includes financial responsibility laws in its repertoire. Financial responsibility laws are set into place to guarantee that all of the motorists who are involved in a collision will have the financial means to pay tor their portions of the damages. The most convenient method of meeting the financial responsibility laws in the state is to purchase Ohio vehicle insurance.

Required Ohio Car Insurance Plans

Ohio has set the standard for the minimum form and monetary amounts of liability coverage that a motorist must have in order to own and operate a car. Under the minimums for the state of Ohio, a motorist must have minimum Bodily Injury Liability limits of $12,500 per injured person up to a total of $25,000 per accident, and Property Damage Liability coverage with a minimum limit of $7,500 . You may hear these referred to as the 12.5/25/7.5 limits for the state. You should remember that these requirements are only the minimum amounts of coverage that you must have. If these limits were not sufficient enough to meet all the expenses incurred in an accident for which you are at fault, you will be held legally financially responsible for the remainder of the balances owed. In order to make certain that restitution for the other involved parties is received, a court system can force you to liquidate physical and financial assets. In addition, your future earnings can be docked in order to make restitution payments. It is commonly agreed that the minimum required liability amounts are inadequate to meet a motorist's financial needs.

The average cost of a Ohio car insurance in 2009 was $1,451. By comparison, the current national average is $1,780 . Currently, the citizens of Ohio enjoy premiums rates that are well below the national average. You may be surprised at the amount of motorists and consumers who automatically assume that a carrier has already predetermined their rates before they inquire about them. This isn't true. There are many factors, including your personal characteristics, your policy needs, and the type of car you wish to insure, that are calculated into the rates you are quoted by a company. Utilizing price comparison techniques will enable you to receive side by side quote comparisons from different companies on the policy that you are interested in purchasing.

Optional Forms of Ohio Car Insurance

There are many other forms of coverage that are not required by the state of Ohio. However, these additional forms of Ohio coverage may prove to be highly useful to you. These other forms of car coverage include GAP, collision, comprehensive, and uninsured motorist protection coverage. GAP coverage is also known as guaranteed car coverage. For example, after a new car has been totaled by an Ohio auto insurance company, the company will offer the owner of the vehicle a settlement. Often there is a discrepancy in the settlement offer and what is actually owed on the car. Your GAP policy then steps in and pays the remaining difference in the balance. This form of coverage may also be known as Lease/Loan Payoff Insurance.

Collision coverage is commonly known in Ohio. However, many motorists are not fully aware of its benefits. Collision coverage will cover the costs of repairs to your vehicle, despite who may or may not have been at fault in the accident. The amount of money that your Ohio car insurance company will put towards the repairs of your car will not exceed the maximum coverage amounts stated in your policy or the current market value of your car, whichever comes first. Because of these limitations, this may not be the most financially reasonable form of coverage to maintain on an older car.

Comprehensive coverage acts as a supplement to collision coverage. It is specifically designed to cover the costs of repairs that your car may incur due to an act of nature (i.e. a tornado or flood) or a crime (i.e. theft or vandalism). With both of these forms of Ohio car insurance, you will be required to select a deductible amount upon the purchase of your policy. The deductible is the out of pocket expense that you must pay before the insurance company will pay for the repairs on your car.

Uninsured motorist protection is divided into two sub categories like liability insurance, namely uninsured motorist bodily protection and uninsured motorist property damage protection. You, as the policy holder, the insured members of your household, and your passengers in your car are covered under this form of insurance. This form of Ohio car insurance will pay for the medical or funeral expenses and the property damage repairs costs that are caused by an at fault driver who is uninsured. It will also apply in the event of a hit and run driver. The amount of money that your Ohio vehicle insurance company will provide towards your expenses will not exceed the limits on your policy.

Unfortunately, the year of 2009 has seen a dramatic rise in the purchase prices for Ohio automobile insurance policies. In order to make certain that you do not purchase unnecessary forms of Ohio auto insurance, it is important that you familiarize yourself with the requirements for the state. It is possible for you to comply with Ohio's laws and remain within the confines of your budget. As mentioned, in recent years, the price of car coverage has risen dramatically. The purchase price of an insurance policy was 28% higher in 2009 than it was in 2008. The purchase price of a policy was 3% lower in 2008 than it was in 2007 . These facts and figures tend to highlight the instability of the coverage market.

The Importance of Maintaining Ohio Car Insurance

Whatever the cost of your Ohio automobile insurance policy may be, you do not want to be caught driving without coverage. For a first offense, you can incur heavy fines. Repeat offenders most often have their licenses revoked. If you are found to be at fault in a car accident without Ohio automobile insurance, you can be subjected to jail time. You also open yourself up to the possibility of being sued by other motorists looking to recoup their losses in the accident. This can lead to years of costly court battles.

Another important thing to know is that the minimum liability insurance requirements will not assist you with the medical expenses or property damage repairs you may incur to your person or vehicle. This is why additional forms of insurance protection may be necessary to protect your assets and investments. Once again, education and research will be your best allies as you struggle to navigate the world of Ohio car insurance. If you have further questions about how a certain form of coverage works or what forms or monetary amounts of coverage you should buy, do not hesitate to contact an agent.

[1] [3] www.carinsurance.com Retrieved November 5, 2009
[2] www.insurance.com Retrieved November 5, 2009

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