You’ve always thought your car was pretty sturdy. You’ve been through a lot together, after all. But that was before a tree decided to pick a fight with it while it was minding is own business, just chilling in the driveway. And, well…The tree won by the simple strategy of falling on it and squishing it. (Which seems like cheating.) Anyways, your main question is this: am I covered by Atlanta car insurance if a tree falls on my car? That’s what we’re going to unpack.
Am I covered if a tree falls on my car?
Well…generally you are if you have comprehensive coverage. If you only have liability coverage, the tree definitely won this one because you’re not covered from this type of loss.
Liability insurance is only meant to protect other drivers on the road (well, it also protects you by safeguarding your bank account.) If you’re in a car accident, your liability insurance will cover your legal obligation to the other driver (and help with your legal expenses if they decide to sue.)
The bodily injury part of your liability insurance can pay for the other driver’s medical bills, lost wages, and so on. The property damage part can help repair or replace the other driver’s car (or other property you happen to damage by driving into it – like a fence or something.) But it won’t help you repair or replace your car if it’s damaged in an accident. Or if, you know, a tree with some sort of grudge crash-lands on it.
That’s where collision coverage and comprehensive coverage come in.
Collision coverage can help you repair or replace your car if it’s damaged in an accident or another sort of collision.
Comprehensive coverage can help you repair or replace your car if something other than an accident or collision damages it (though, alas, it doesn’t cover everything.) It generally covers the following losses:
- Animal strikes (for example, if you hit a deer)
- And…falling objects (like if a tree falls on it)
So, as you can see, collision and comprehensive coverage are important pieces of the “protect your bank account” mission you embarked on when you got your insurance. If you have a loan on your car, your lienholder may require you to carry collision and comprehensive insurance. (They want to protect their investment in the car, after all.)
What about my deductible?
Well, yes – there is that…
Your deductible is the amount you’ve agreed to pay if you have a claim. You have your portion of the claim and the insurance company takes care of the rest. You can set your deductible at the level that you’re comfortable with, but you’ll have to pay it if you have a claim.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say your deductible is $500. That tree falls on your car (very rudely) and causes $6,000 of damage. You would pay $500 and the insurance company would pay $5,500. If it’s any consolation…they’re paying a lot more than you are.
(Note that your deductible can affect your car insurance rates. If you raise your deductible, you could see lower premiums because you’re less likely to file a claim. However, you don’t want to set your deductible so high that it would be a big financial burden to pay in the event that a rogue tree trashes your car. Or a fire destroys it. Consider how much you could comfortably afford to pay in the event of a claim and find your happy premium-deductible balance.)
If you’ve made an investment by buying a car, it makes sense to protect it with insurance. When you get car insurance, don’t forget to give some thought to collision and comprehensive coverage. It can prevent you from having to shoulder the entire cost of the car repairs from either an accident or a freak occurrence like a deer strike – or if a tree falls.
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