As a trusted insurance expert in Michigan, Peter Vitale helps countless customers find the best auto insurance types for their needs. With just a quick conversation, he can figure out the level of protection each party prefers, and provide an overview of every insurance option that might serve them best. For Michigan-based Peter Vitale, client education is pivotal to guaranteeing a long-term positive experience, and fruitful professional relationship. While many drivers are aware about the basic differences between types of policies, there are many nuances that should be explored. Here’s a look at the varying types of auto insurance, and award-winning insurance expert Peter Vitale’s take on each type of policy:
Most states require that drivers carry a certain amount of liability coverage while driving on public roads. The liability only policy must include both bodily injury and property damage coverage to abide by the law. In Michigan, for example, drivers have to go beyond liability with a basic no-fault policy, which includes personal injury protection (PIP) and property protection (PPI) as well.
The bodily injury part of the liability plan covers any injuries to any other people involved in an accident. With this coverage, the plan will pay to cover their medical bills and other expenses that result from the injuries, up to the maximum allowed amount.
Property damage liability, on the other hand, covers the other party’s vehicle repairs or replacement. Additionally, it pays for any other damage that has occurred. If the accident caused damage to another party’s yard, for example, the liability coverage will kick in for the repairs, up to the maximum limits on the policy.
Liability is the bare minimum when it comes to auto insurance. It does not help drivers pay for their own medical bills or vehicle replacement costs, making it a sure choice only for those who have little wiggle room in their budget. Insurance industry experts like Peter Vitale often urge customers to consider how this type of coverage may fall short in the event of an accident. Often, drivers with liability only policies end up paying exorbitant amounts of money out-of-pocket in the event of an accident, adding financial stressors to an already tense worst-case scenario.
Drivers typically have the option to add collision coverage to their auto insurance policy, although it will raise their rates. Though collision coverage is deemed an “extra” addition, it is required on vehicles that are not yet fully paid off.
Collision insurance provides the policyholders with protection if they’re deemed at fault in an accident. Whether they collided with another vehicle or hit a stationary object, collision coverage allows policyholders to get their own vehicle repaired or replaced. Peace of mind in this type of scenario is a primary motivator for many policyholders interested in collision insurance, according to Peter Vitale.
The policyholders may need to take their car into the shop or have damage reviewed by an insurance inspector to see what their policy may pay out. Then, they will need to pay the deductible before the coverage pays for the remainder of the bill. In some cases, the insurance company may just deduct the total amount owed on the deductible from the insurance payout before providing the rest of the coverage.
Collision coverage provides protection from losses due to accidents, but it does not cover vandalism, fire, or other types of damage. That’s where comprehensive coverage comes in, and offers the widest breadth of protection for motorists. Drivers can add comprehensive coverage to their auto insurance plan to protect the value and condition of their car. Peter Vitale, leading insurance expert, touts comprehensive insurance as providing a “blanket” of coverage for varying needs.
If someone breaks into a policyholder’s car, hits it with a baseball bat, or even scratches the paint, for example, the policyholder can have the damage repaired with this type of coverage added to their policy. Lightning strikes, hail, and other types of damage from severe weather conditions are also covered by this type of car insurance. Though these “freak accidents” may sometimes appear rare, Peter Vitale reminds auto owners that they do happen.
As with collision coverage, a deductible does apply. The policyholder is responsible for the deductible, which they set while establishing the coverage. A higher deductible usually results in a lower monthly premium, but it can prove difficult to cover if anything goes awry. An experienced insurance consultant in Michigan, like Peter Vitale, can help drivers figure out what deductible to select and understand how it will impact their monthly premiums.
Personal Injury Protection
Since bodily injury liability does not cover the driver’s injuries, it’s often wise to add personal injury protection to the car insurance policy. In Michigan, PIP is required to ensure that the driver is just as well protected as the occupants of other vehicles involved in the collision.
Depending on the selected coverage limits, personal injury protection can pay for medical bills, lost wages, and even childcare needed as a result of an injury. After an accident, the coverage kicks in regardless of fault, which provides drivers with true peace of mind at all times.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist
Although car insurance is legally required in most states, not all people on the road carry coverage that abides by local laws. Even with insurance, the total amount of coverage carried on the plan may not fully pay for all injuries and property damage. If that occurs, then the other parties are out of luck and have to sue for damages. This process can take years and cost a lot more money.
Thankfully, it’s possible to add uninsured and underinsured motor insurance to cover such incidents. This type of coverage pays for medical bills and vehicle repairs if the responsible party does not have any auto insurance, or enough coverage on their plan.
Although this type of car insurance is not required in Michigan, Peter Vitale often recommends it. For most drivers, the peace of mind it can provide is well worth the extra amount it adds to the monthly premium.
Other Types of Auto Insurance Coverage
Many insurance companies also offer additional types of insurance for specific situations. Drivers who own classic cars may want specialty coverage that goes beyond what basic insurance offers. The collector car insurance may provide reimbursement for aftermarket parts, restoration work, and the like, making it easier to protect their investments.
Drivers with brand new, leased vehicles under their care might want to add gap insurance to their plan instead. This type of insurance pays off the auto loan in full if the car gets totaled in an accident. This keeps the policyholder from ending up underwater in their loan while losing the use of their vehicle.
Although it might seem like there’s too many different types of coverage, auto insurance experts like Peter Vitale in Michigan, can assist drivers in understanding what to buy. Then, they can sign up with the confidence that they’re getting the perfect level of protection for their needs.
How to Find the Right Level of Auto Insurance Coverage
Although it is always a great idea to get as much auto insurance coverage as possible, that is not always an option for all drivers. When helping people find their ideal level of auto insurance coverage in Michigan, Peter Vitale dives deep into their situation to see what would benefit them most.
Only by looking at their driving habits, vehicle types, budget, and other factors is it possible to zero in on the best types of insurance for each client’s needs. Beyond that, this thorough look helps to identify the ideal level of coverage for each insurance type selected.
Using the expert information gained from their discussions, drivers can confidently sign up for their car insurance of choice with the assurance they will end up well protected from whatever comes their way. They can also increase their coverage if their situation changes or their budget opens up to allow higher premiums.
About Peter Vitale
Michigan-based Peter Vitale has an established reputation as someone who knows how to grow insurance agencies, and provide unprecedented customer service. Since successfully growing an Allstate insurance agency, Peter Vitale now provides consulting services to other agency owners.
Peter Vitale began his insurance leadership career with Allstate as an Executive Account Manager in 2012. With an unwavering entrepreneurial spirit, he quickly pivoted to agency ownership. Peter Vitale launched Bloomfield Insurance Group, and swiftly grew the agency.
Peter Vitale’s agency was recognized by Allstate in 2014 with both a national and a regional accolade. The agency was named to Allstate’s “Miami Heat,” which is a national recognition of the company’s agencies that show the most growth. The agency was also shortlisted for Allstate’s North Central Top Honors Ring, which is a regional award that’s given out based on profit, retention and growth. Vitale’s agency was again praised by Allstate for its growth in 2016.
As a result of his success with Bloomfield Insurance Group, Peter Vitale saw an opportunity to expand his insurance career through consulting. As a consultant, Peter Vitale applies his knowledge and experience to help other insurance agency owners grow their businesses. He typically works with agencies that have stagnant or declining sales, and he’s helped several of these agencies turn their sales trends around.