Guide to California Auto Insurance

Before you sign on the dotted line to a commitment to a California auto insurance policy, you should learn a little about what you may be getting into. A guide to California auto insurance can help you learn a few basics about auto insurance coverage and help you be a more informed consumer allowing you to obtain the right California auto insurance for you.

California Auto Insurance Liability Coverage

The state of California requires you to maintain at least liability auto insurance in order to operate a vehicle. California liability auto insurance pays for damages to the other party or parties if you are involved in an accident in which you are responsible, but it does not cover your own damages.

The minimum requirements for liability insurance in California are 15/30/5, which means $15,000 per person for bodily injury, up to $30,000 per accident for bodily injury and $5,000 per accident for property damage.

This is one of the lowest minimum requirements of any state, which means you should probably consider upping these coverage limits in order to keep you from having to pay a big expense out-of-pocket in case some sort of accident does happen in which you are considered to be at fault. It doesn’t take a very large accident for the damages to exceed these minimum liability coverage limits.

Cost of California Auto Insurance

California auto insurance is fairly reasonable when it comes to cost, as it ranked as the 23rd most expensive state for auto insurance in 2007. Average yearly cost in 2007 was $1,771 for California auto insurance, which leaves plenty of room for savings for the smart consumer.

California Auto Insurance Discounts

When shopping for California auto insurance you can save a bundle by understanding which discounts you may qualify for. California auto insurance companies set their policy costs according to the overall price it takes to cover the average driver. They then either raise or lower their rates for each customer based upon that particular customer’s risk factors.

Basic risk factors include the following:

  • Age
  • Credit history
  • Driving history
  • Sex
  • Type of vehicle insured
  • Where vehicle is garaged

Once your rate is determined based upon these factors and the type of policy you seek, there are discounts available to further lower your rates. This will be a matter of proving to the California auto insurance company that you are a lower risk customer.

There are a wide variety of discounts available such as those for:

  • Air Bags
  • Alarm system
  • Anti-lock brakes
  • Good students
  • Membership in professional clubs
  • Military and government employees
  • Multiple vehicles

These are only a few of the discounts offered by most California auto insurance companies. You should check with any auto insurance company that you are considering to note which discounts they offer and which you may qualify for.

Prominent California Auto Insurance Companies

As a California driver, you have the opportunity to shop around for the best auto insurance from a wide variety of the most noted and reputable auto insurance companies in the United States.

Here are some of the nationwide auto insurance companies that offer auto insurance to the residents of California.

  • 21st Century
  • AIG
  • Allstate
  • Deerbrook
  • Farmers
  • GEICO
  • Hartford
  • Nationwide
  • Progressive
  • SAFECO
  • State Farm
  • UNITRIN
  • Workman’s

Before you decide on a particular California auto insurance company, make sure you do some research on the company to find out the type of policies offered, their financial stability ratings from A.M. Best and Standard and Poor’s, and their customer service ratings.

The more you know about California auto insurance, the better decisions you will make when choosing the policy you need and the company to work with.

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Finding an auto insurance company is not difficult, but finding the right auto insurance company can be challengling. Policy provisions vary from company to company, as do premium rates. When you are considering which auto insurance company to get coverage from, it pays to do some research to make sure that the company is a reputable one. You also want to ensure that your company has the assets to pay out a large claim, if that becomes necessary…
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