Having enough auto insurance coverage is essential in N.C.

Car insurance is designed to provide peace of mind. If and when a car accident happens, it is reassuring to know that one's insurance policy will help cover the damage and costs. However, what many North Carolinians only find out after it is too late is that they don't have as much insurance coverage as they thought they did. Having adequate coverage is essential for obvious reasons, so it's worth understanding how to find a policy that truly offers the coverage that drivers expect and need.

What the law says

In North Carolina, as in all states, the law sets a minimum amount of insurance that drivers must carry. The website for the North Carolina Department of Transportation states that according to current law, the minimum liability insurance that drivers in the state must carry is $30,000 for bodily injury for one person, $60,000 bodily injury for two or more people, and $25,000 for property damage. G.S. 20-279.21 also requires that drivers carry uninsured coverage which provides protection in the event that an insured driver is in an accident with a driver who is carrying no insurance. The law also provides for underinsured coverage on policies written over the $30,000.00 minimum. In other words, if you are hit by a driver who carries only the minimum amount of coverage, your underinsured coverage will cover you up to the amount you have in excess of the minimum.

Updating car insurance policies

Car insurance is something that many people only think about when they buy a car. Afterwards, they tend to forget about it. That's a problem because major life events could mean that one's insurance policy no longer provides sufficient protection. For example, marriage is a great opportunity to look into getting a combined car insurance policy, which may not only provide more coverage but could even be cheaper.

For parents whose teenage children are starting to drive, it may be necessary to add them to one's insurance policy. Not surprisingly, adding a teenage driver to an insurance policy tends to drive up premiums. However, there are ways to keep costs down, including by shopping around with other insurers, agreeing to pay a higher deductible, or asking about whether adding safety features to a vehicle can help lead to a discount.

Getting "full coverage"

Many people understandably believe that so long as they have full coverage then they are protected in the event of any car accident. However, as we've discussed before, full coverage is a specific type of policy that typically only include coverage for the state's minimum requirements, comprehensive coverage, and collision. Full coverage policies often will not provide underinsured coverage, roadside assistance, towing, gap coverage, or coverage for custom parts. It's important to take a close look at the fine print of any insurance policy - even one that calls itself "full coverage" - in order to make sure it actually provides what you need for adequate protection.

Talking to an attorney

Without adequate insurance, an accident could lead to significant financial distress and hefty bills. Anybody who has been involved in an accident or who just wants to make sure their policy has them covered should talk to a personal injury attorney today. An experienced attorney can help clients pursue whatever claims they may be entitled to after an accident and represent them when negotiating with insurance companies.