D. Gilson is a writer and author of essays, poetry, and scholarship that explore the relationship between popular culture, literature, sexuality, and memoir. His latest book is Jesus Freak, with Will Stockton, part of Bloomsbury’s 33 1/3 Series. His other books include I Will Say This Exactly One Time and Crush. His first chapbook, Catch & Release, won the 2012 Robin Becker Prize from Seve...

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Reviewed by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer

UPDATED: Jul 19, 2021

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Just the Basics

  • Comprehensive auto insurance pays for damages to your vehicle not resulting from a crash
  • Comprehensive covers damages from theft, fire, flood, vandalism, and other incidents
  • Comprehensive coverage can be required if you purchase a new car

Comprehensive car insurance helps pay for damages to your car in certain cases not related to a collision.

What does comprehensive insurance cover? Comprehensive covers damages to your car not sustained in an accident. This type of car insurance only covers your vehicle damage and doesn’t include bodily injury or damages to another vehicle.

How much insurance do I need for my car? Do I even need comprehensive coverage?

Car insurance can be confusing. Keep reading to find out just what is comprehensive insurance and whether or not you need it.

Adding comprehensive car insurance to your policy is easy and inexpensive. But before you buy comprehensive car insurance, shop around to make sure you are getting the best deal.

Enter your ZIP code now to compare rates with your comprehensive car insurance quote.

What is comprehensive car insurance?

What is comprehensive coverage? The comprehensive insurance definition says that it helps pay for the repair or replacement of your vehicle if it is stolen or is damaged by something other than a collision.

Comprehensive insurance covers such damages as:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Acts of nature such as hurricane, tornado, flood, or hail
  • Falling debris such as tree limbs
  • Riots
  • Windshield and glass damage
  • Animal damage such as hitting a deer

Comprehensive coverage does not pay for:

  • Bodily injuries
  • Damage to another car
  • Single car rollover accident
  • Damage to an object like a fence, guardrail, or light post

You will have a comprehensive deductible that you can set, and your choices will affect your cost. A higher deductible equals a lower rate, but you will have more out-of-pocket expense in a claim.

In general, comprehensive car insurance rates are very inexpensive and are about $12 a month.

Who needs comprehensive car insurance?

Comprehensive coverage is not a state requirement, but it is generally a good idea.

If you have an expensive car, drive often, or live in an area with a lot of theft or natural disasters, comprehensive coverage might be a great choice for you.

Also, if you purchase a newer vehicle and finance it, you may be required to add comprehensive coverage to your auto insurance.

However, if you have an older car that isn’t worth much money, you might consider skipping comprehensive coverage.

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What the difference between comprehensive and collision car insurance coverages?

Collision coverage is similar to comprehensive as it helps pay for damages to your car. However, collision insurance only pays for damages resulting from an accident.

For example, if you hit a deer, comprehensive coverage pays for the damages. But, if you swerve to avoid the deer and hit a tree, collision insurance pays for the damages.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, four out of five drivers adds collision and comprehensive coverages to their car insurance.

You should always compare quotes from multiple companies to find the best deals on your car insurance, including comprehensive coverage.

Enter your ZIP code to find affordable comprehensive car insurance near you.