Does my auto insurance cover hail damage?

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We made it past last month’s holiday season without the hassle of a typical Michigan winter, but with the snow and ice storms predicted to continue, we know that the dreaded winter season is finally upon us.

Therefore, it is time to ensure that you have the proper winter (and spring) related auto insurance coverage and that, more importantly, you understand how that coverage protects you.

As roads worsen, there is usually an increase in the number of collision claims as the risk of car accidents increases. But what about non-collision related losses, such as hail damage?

If you have comprehensive coverage on your vehicle, your auto insurance will cover hail damage to your vehicle. However, if you only have liability coverage (commonly referred to as “PLPD”), then this type of coverage is not included.

Like collision coverage, comprehensive coverage typically has a deductible that applies to each claim. Comprehensive coverage deductibles can range from $0 to $1,000 (or higher), depending on the policy. This deductible reduces the amount that the insurance company will pay toward the repairs to your vehicle and will be your out-of-pocket cost for the repairs.

For example, assume you have comprehensive coverage with a $100 deductible on your Honda Civic. When a storm rolls through town, your Civic is dented by hail. A body shop prepares a repair estimate of $1,900 to fix the hail damage. Your comprehensive claim would be calculated as:

  • Amount of damage: $1,900

  • Deductible: ($100)

    ————

  • Comprehensive claim: $1,800

Comprehensive coverage tends to be less expensive than collision coverage, which is why we generally suggest using a lower deductible for comprehensive coverage than collision coverage. This helps keep insurance costs reasonable, yet minimizes the amount of out-of-pocket cost in the event your vehicle suffers hail damage (or any other comprehensive claim).

This article was written by Brian Boer and Tori Roughley. Please email any questions or comments to Tori at victoria.roughley@boerinsurance.com.