Auto Insurance in Florida – 8 Important Things to Know about Your Coverage

 

Auto Insurance in Florida - 8 Important Things to Know about Your Coverage

Shopping for your auto insurance in Florida can be complicated and confusing, but if you do your job you make it less difficult.  Regardless of the type of vehicle you drive, it’s essential to have enough protection.  Liability coverage protects you and your assets in case you’re at-fault in an accident resulting to damages of another driver’s property or bodily injury.  Remember the tips bellow when determining the cost of liability coverage to maintain your auto policy in Florida.

What to know about your auto insurance in Florida?

1.   It’s a must to have it. If you are a driver in Florida, you’re required to get your liability insurance.  You are going to lose your privileges in driving if you are caught driving without it.  It means you’re not supposed to leave the driveway if you haven’t obtained this essential coverage.  And if you’re not covered, you’re only exposing yourself to some serious risks, liability and even violating the law.

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Florida Auto Insurance: Things to Know When Choosing Auto Insurance

Florida Auto Insurance: Things to Know When Choosing Auto Insurance

While people may enjoy shopping, looking for a Florida car insurance may not be as simple as they perceive it. The process can be more stressful and time-wasting. Therefore, if you’re trying to overcome a wrong decision, plan carefully what to do to come up with a wise decision ahead of time. 

Things to know when choosing auto insurance

  1. Insurance agents can be burdensome at times so you must be ready to know what you need. Stick to it to avoid unnecessary extra charges. Doing it is simple: simply consider your car—its model and year, as well as your driving skills.  Come to think of it: Is there any benefit in buying a costly policy for a 15-year-old car you can only drive within your vicinity?
  2. Once you have clearly settled the kind of car insurance you need, then go to the next—the services that fit your needs.  They may not be essential and can even cause you a few more dollars. But conveniently, right services will give you comfort because you know you’ve got the right services.

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Knowing Your Florida Motorcycle Insurance

Knowing Your Florida Motorcycle Insurance

While riding a motorcycle gives you time of road freedom, you would still feel worried about some statistics.  Data and information show that fatalities and injuries from riding motorcycles are the causes of all traffic damages and deaths.  This is the reason why Florida motorcycle insurance is so important.

Everybody may understand that Florida’s Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Law and No-Fault Law do not apply to motorcycles.  But, the law on Financial Responsibility applies to every motorcycle in Florida, as well as to motor vehicles. Therefore, unless you’re independent financially and have filed certificate on financial responsibility, a policy must be in your priority list.

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State of Florida: Ranks 5th among the Most-Expensive States to Insure a New Car in 2015

State of Florida: Ranks 5th among the Most-Expensive States to Insure a New Car In 2015

Drivers in the State of Florida who try to get their car insurance will be paying $1,742.00 on average, or nearly 33% greater than the national average. This is in accordance with the current study done by Insure.com on car insurance rates among the different states in the US.

This ranks the Sunshine State from the 5 most-expensive states on new cars that need to be insured. Drivers in Ohio, Idaho and Maine will pay third, less than the car insurance in the national average. By far, motorists from Michigan will pay the most rates in car insurance.

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Teen Auto Insurance – Auto Insurance Rating Factors for Younger Drivers

Teen Auto Insurance in Florida

In general, teen auto insurance tends to be more costly than the auto insurance for older drivers. Obviously, teens are more aggressive, stronger and more inexperienced than their parents.  Younger drivers are still on their way up the rank to enjoy road adventures and travelling.

Why do teens pay higher insurance rates?

Based on statistics, teens are more likely to face road accidents, commit traffic violations and get traffic tickets compared to mature drivers.  Almost all auto insurance companies consider these things in determining the high risk factors when it’s time for teens to get their teen car insurance.  Fortunately, they can keep their insurance rates less expensive the way it should be.

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Driverless Cars: Impact on Your Auto Insurance

Driverless Cars: Impact on Your Auto Insurance

The growth of technology is visibly increasing over time. This is expected in the coming of the most awaited driverless cars to invade the thoroughfares. Think about your car without a steering wheel that must be controlled and no parking troubles to worry about. There will be no issue about having a drunk driver controlling the car while driving. The effect can be helpful to humans, particularly to car owners, but what about the state of auto insurance companies?

Based on statistics taken from the International Organization for Road Accident Prevention, the usual cases of car accidents caused by car owners and drivers reach 90%. In case the driverless cars will fix most of the human errors in driving, what will the impact be on the insurance industry?

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Tropical Storm Targets South Florida

 

System aiming at South Florida becomes Tropical Depression 16; could be Tropical Storm Nicole in hours

by Eliot Kleinberg

The system on a collision course with Florida, arriving as early as this afternoon, became Tropical Depression 16 at 11 a.m. today. At 2 p.m., top sustained winds were near 35 mph, just below tropical storm strength, and the system is expected to become Tropical Storm Nicole later  this afternoon. But the official forecast calls for a 60 percent chance that Palm Beach County never will see tropical storm force winds. And the National Weather Service’s Miami office says there’s a “very low” chance. It says top sustained winds in Palm Beach County will be in the 25 mph to 35 mph range, with gusts up to 45 mph, although it said stronger winds still are possible depending on the system’s path. 

mflwindthreat_smA tropical storm warning is in place from Jupiter Inlet south to the Keys and a tropical storm watch north to Sebastian Inlet as well as for southwest Florida.

Also, a flood watch is set to be posted at 4 p.m. today and run through 2 p.m. Wednesday for Palm Beach County and points south. While heavy rains should start tonight, it’s most likely tropical storm force winds won’t affect Palm Beach County until Wednesday, if ever, the National Weather Service’s Robert Molleda said this morning. As much as 8 inches of rain could fall on South Florida, with the heaviest rains expected south and southeast of Lake Okeechobee, according to water managers at the South Florida Water Management District. They said Broward and Miami-Dade counties likely will see more rain than Palm Beach County. 

The heaviest rains are expected late this afternoon and tonight and then overnight, with a good chance they’ll make Wednesday morning’s commute an unpleasant one. The center of the system was expected to near southeastern Florida by Wednesday afternoon and east of Boynton Beach around 8 p.m. Wednesday. The system should be gone by Thursday morning. National Weather Service forecaster Brad Diehl said. At  2 p.m., the depression’s center was about 370 miles south-southwest of Miami. It was moving north-northeast at 10 mph. 

There's less than a 40 percent chance of tropical storm force winds for PB County There’s a 40 percent chance of tropical storm force winds for PB County 

145212w_sm1With the strongest winds east and south of the system’s center, if it stays right at or near the coast, tropical storm force winds would stay off shore, Molleda – warning coordination meteorologist at the weather service’s Miami office – said this morning. “Since it’s such a disproportionate distribution of wind and rain, if the system tracks offshore, even if it’s by a few miles, that’s the different between getting tropical storm force winds and not getting any at all,” he said. If the storm stays off shore, that also could reduce the projected deluge, Molleda said. But with the storm so close, and its status changing nearly hourly, “we’re walking a big of a tightrope,” he said. 

Assistant Palm Beach County administrator Vince Bonvento said the county does not expect to go into full storm mode but is watching the storm’s progress. He said the county’s final budget meeting still is set to go on at 6 p.m. Palm Beach Schools officials said at midday they’ll decide later today whether the storm will affect schools on Wednesday. The system is forecast to dissolve into a front on Thursday. Post staff writers Christine Stapleton and Jennifer Sorentrue  contributed to this report. 

15 things you didn’t know your car and home insurance policies cover

15 things you didn’t know your car and home insurance policies cover

By Insure.com

Last updated Aug. 29, 2010

Your insurance policies probably include coverage you’ve never thought about. In order for you to get the most value from your policy, check out these things that may already be included for your premium payments:

1. A lawyer for your problem

Americans have a 10 percent chance of being sued in any given year and a 33 percent chance of being sued in their lifetimes, according to IFG Trust Services Inc., an international investment firm. Both your home and car insurance will provide you with legal defense if you’re sued for an incident that’s covered by your policy. For example, your home insurance company will provide a lawyer if you are sued because someone is injured on your property — whether it’s inside your home or outside on the sidewalk.

If a court finds you negligent and awards damages to the other party, your insurance will pay up to the liability limits defined by your policy. If you have assets to protect, such as a house, savings or investments, consider buying an umbrella policy. Umbrella coverage, which provides liability coverage above and beyond your home and car insurance, typically starts at $1 million. Read how umbrella policies extend your coverage.

2. Your naughty dog

home insurance for dogs

Say your normally mild-mannered tail-wagger has a bad day. One of your neighbor’s children wants to play but your pooch isn’t in the mood and responds negatively. The bite causes the child an injury that requires hospitalization. Your neighbor sues you, seeking reimbursement for the child’s medical bills. Depending on what breed of dog you own, where you live and your insurance company, home insurance may have you covered. Some home insurers have lists of breeds and crossbreeds they will not insure; other insurers consider such breeds on a case-by-case basis, or charge more for certain “biting” breeds such as pit bulls. Check your policy or call to see if you have coverage. For more, read home insurance for dog lovers.

11. Flat tires, lockouts and more A number of things can go wrong with your car. Maybe you hit a pothole on your way to work and suffer a flat tire. Perhaps you mindlessly locked your keys inside your car. It’s possible that your gas gauge malfunctioned and you ran out of gas. If you added roadside assistance coverage to your car insurance policy, you’re covered for most of these things. For example, Progressive’s Emergency Roadside Assistance coverage includes towing, flat-tire changes, battery jumpstarts, emergency fuel and fluid delivery and locksmith service. Roadside assistance coverage is optional and relatively cheap.

12. Bad checks, fake cash and other fraud 

If someone writes you a bogus check, your credit card is stolen or you unknowingly accepted counterfeit cash, you could be covered. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), home insurance coverage can include unauthorized use of credit cards, forged checks and counterfeit cash. However, policy limits are generally very low, such as $500.

13. Family grave markers 

If a grave monument on a family plot has been vandalized or otherwise damaged, such as struck by lightning, it may be covered, depending on your insurance company. Many companies provide up to $5,000 for damage to a grave marker, including headstones, monuments and urns, according to III. However, policies generally exclude damage resulting from a catastrophe, such as a hurricane. There’s no additional charge for this coverage.

14. Trees, plants & your lawn 

Many home insurance policies automatically cover damage to trees, shrubs, plants and lawns on your property. Damage can be the result of theft, vandalism, an aircraft crash, riot, explosion, fire or lightning. Generally, there’s a $500 limit for any one tree, shrub, plant or re-sodding a lawn.

15. Spoiled Food 

If the food in your refrigerator spoils due to a power outage from a covered peril, you may be covered — depending on your insurer and where you live. However, the power outage must be the result of a covered peril such as windstorm, lightning, fire or hail. Some companies automatically include this under your homeowners policy. Others sell food spoiler coverage as a separate endorsement.

3. An injured pet

Car accidents are dangerous not only for people but also the pets riding with them. And because pets don’t have the benefit of seat belts, even a minor collision can result in pet injuries and major veterinary bills.

Depending on your insurance company and where you live, your auto insurance could pick up the bill. For example, Farmer’s Insurance will pay for pet medical costs up to $600 if you have comprehensive and collision coverage — in some states. You don’t pay extra for this coverage. Coverage applies in the event of your pet’s death or injury in a car accident, hijacking or theft (exotic animals not included). Here’s more about insurance coverage for pets in car accidents.

4. Terrorism

If a group like Al-Qaeda bombs your neighborhood, your property is covered under both your home and car insurance policies. Standard homeowners insurance policies include coverage for damage to property and personal possessions resulting from an act of terrorism. If your car is damaged or destroyed in a terrorist attack, your car insurance policy will cover the damage if you have purchased comprehensive coverage. But if you carry only liability coverage, your car would not be covered.

While terrorism is covered, acts of war are excluded. After an attack, the government would declare whether it is terrorism or war and your insurance will respond accordingly. Note that biological and nuclear attacks are not covered. Here’s how insurance takes cover from war and biological attacks.

5. Your stolen gun

Say your teen invites a few friends to your home and later you discover that your .40 caliber semiautomatic handgun is missing. You would report the theft and your home insurance will likely cover it. Most standard policies cover theft of firearms for up to $1,500. If you own an extensive collection of guns, consider purchasing extra coverage.

6. Your drunk friends

If you’ve just hosted a rollicking party but one of your guests left drunk and caused an accident, the finger of blame could point at you. In most states, you can be held responsible for his actions and find yourself in court. If a civil claim is filed against you, your home insurance pays for your legal representation and any damages the court awards — up to the limits of your policy. See where you could be held liable under “social host liability” laws. It’s important to have adequate liability coverage. Most insurance agents recommend buying liability coverage between $300,000 and $500,000.

7. Those reckless friends

If you loan your car to a friend for a few hours and he crashes it, your own insurance policy will come to your rescue. (It doesn’t matter whether or not your friend is insured, because your policy kicks in on your car.) Your policy insures your vehicle plus “you, any relative and anyone else using your car if the use is with your permission.” Even if your friend has his own car insurance, your insurance will pay for damage caused to others and, if you carry collision insurance, for damage to your car. However, you’ll have to pay your deductible for any collision claim. For more, read about what happens when your friend crashes your car.

8. Stolen gifts

We’ve all stashed purchases in our car in a mall parking lot and gone back in for more shopping. But car insurance does not cover personal possessions that are stolen from your vehicle. Fortunately, theft of personal property is covered under your home insurance. You’ll need to file a police report and pay a deductible to make a theft-related insurance claim. If your receipts are stolen along with your gifts, you will need to document your purchases, perhaps by obtaining duplicate receipts from the stores.

9. Your lost luggage

home insurance for lost luggage

Any trip can turn sour if your luggage does not return with you. Fortunately, many home insurance policies will reimburse you for lost or stolen luggage. Loretta Worters of the Insurance Information Institute says that this falls under “off-premises coverage” in some home insurance policies. Sometimes coverage is automatic, but some insurance companies may charge extra, she says.

If you made expensive purchases while on vacation that are gone with your luggage, you won’t recoup your expenses. Generally, you will be reimbursed only up to $500 for loss of personal property in luggage. If you know you will be making expensive purchases, you should probably have certain items insured separately.

10. Your child’s college dorm

If a thief robs your child’s college dorm, your home insurance policy should have you covered. Most home insurance policies will extend coverage to theft of personal belongings in your child’s dorm. However, coverage does not extend to an off-campus apartment rented by your child; for that you’ll need renter’s insurance. Also, your child must be a full-time student and be considered your dependent for coverage to apply.

STAND UP ACT! Together, we can save teen lives

Dear Allstater,

The first value of Our Shared Vision is honesty, caring and integrity. Caring speaks to the way we treat customers, communities and each other. Integrity means we always do the right things in the right way at the right time. We need your help in living into this value by supporting federal legislation which will save lives of thousands of teenagers.

Allstate has been leading an effort to pass the STANDUP Act which ties the existence of state-based graduated drivers’ licensing laws to federal highway spending. Motor vehicle crashes are the number one killer of teens in the United States, causing over 4,000 deaths each year. That’s an average of 11 per day, 365 days a year. Graduated drivers’ licensing laws expand the rights of teenagers as they age and gain on-the-road experience. This is a proven way to save lives and could reduce fatalities by nearly 30 percent – that’s about 1,200 lives per year.

You can contribute to this effort in several ways. First, you can join the Save 11 campaign by going to www.facebook.com/save11 or by signing the Allstate petition here. Our goal is for you to join thousands of others in communicating with Congress that we need to deal with this problem now. Second, you can use the STANDUP Act advocacy toolkit to solicit support with customers and in your communities. Encourage others to visit the Save 11 Facebook page.

Since we started the Save 11 campaign earlier this year, we have come face to face with the pain and sadness that comes from losing a child. Let’s do the right thing and show the power of 70,000 Allstaters united in making the world a better place.

Tom Wilson

Should credit scoring be used to determine insurance rates?

Should credit scoring be used to determine insurance rates?

The National Consumer Law Center says insurer use of credit scoring “creates wide racial disparities and is fundamentally unfair to consumers”, but carriers argue the tool actually lowers premiums for most and encourages them to write more coverage.

Recently, the House Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, part of the House Financial Services Committee examined this issue. 

Regulators are presently investigating the following:

  • The components of an insurance score;
  • The extent to which any one rating factor affects a consumer;
  • Whether consumers have an appropriate understanding of the credit factors that affect a particular insurance policy; and
  • Whether insurance score vendors should be subject to enhanced transparency or supervision.

David Snyder, American Insurance Association vice president and associate general counsel,  appeared before the subcommittee and stated that credit scoring provides an objective, cost effective risk measurement tool for all, components of auto insurance coverage.  In addition “by providing a comparative and quantitative measure for each risk, it has allowed insurers to move toward pricing which is much more tailored to individual risk, replacing the old system that relied exclusively on large group classifications, such as geographic territory or age.”  Finally, he said insurers say “they have more confidence that they are able to accurately predict and price for all levels of risk”. In short, credit scoring encourages them to write more coverage.

Without credit scoring there will be higher premiums for most consumers and less availability of insurance for marginal insurance risks according to Ms. Fortney, whose law firm specializes in consumer financial services.

Many critics argue that data supports the notion that the use of credit scoring has a higher than average impact on the poor and minorities.  But Ms. Fortney says that “the existence of a disparate impact on a protected group would not, standing alone, constitute a violation of the Fair Housing Act or the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.               

Currently 48 states regulate the use of credit scores for insurance and none allow scores to be used as the sole basis for increasing rates or denying, cancelling or non-renewing policies.

What do you say?

Teen Driving – Alternative to Texting

One Alternative to Texting

I just came across one alternative to driving and texting that everyone can use and I thought I’d share it with you.  I downloaded it to my Blackberry without any problems.  The free version only reads 25 words from your message so you might want to upgrade for a small fee but I think it’s better than texting or reading emails while driving if you must.

What is DriveSafe.ly™?

DriveSafe.ly is a mobile application that reads text (SMS) messages and emails aloud in real time and automatically responds without drivers touching the mobile phone. DriveSafe.ly is the solution to texting while driving.

                                                   Features

  • Reads your text messages and emails out loud in real time
  • Hands Free – No need to touch the phone while driving
  • One-touch activation – no complicated setup
  • Bluetooth and radio transmitter compatible
  • Reads text message shorthand (lol, brb)
  • Optional customizable auto-responder
                                             Benefits

  • Eliminates texting while driving and reading emails while driving
  • Safely stay connected while reducing distracted driving
  • Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road
  • Be safer and more productive during your commute
  • Lightweight app doesn’t slow down phone or drain battery
  • Flexible app allows many customization options

Go to http://www.drivesafe.ly/  and see if your phone will work with this application