Comprehensive coverage is usually bought as part of a full coverage car insurance and compensates for losses due to many perils including vandalism, which is an intentional act of someone causing damage to your automobile. This may be out of anger, attempt to break in, playing a prank or accidental and almost always paid by insurers as long as there is the above provision in policies.
Liability only policies don’t pay for any physical damage to your own automobile. Motorists usually buy full coverage auto insurance to comply with their states’ financial responsibility rules and insure their own cars properly with Collision and Comprehensive covers.
Comprehensive coverage deals with most losses related to policyholders’ own automobiles including vandalism, theft, civil unrest, natural disasters and accidental damages like a roof tile flying off and hitting the car. Crash related losses are paid by Collision. Comprehensive is an optional vehicle insurance provision and requires additional premium but auto loan lenders insist on it and most owners have it voluntarily.
Vandalism is a common destruction and comes in many forms. Someone deliberately key the vehicle, spray paint, hit it with an object, run on it with a supermarket trolley, play a prank on it, cause damage while trying to break in, stumble upon it while drunk, maliciously slash the tires or cause damages during a riot and car insurance almost always covers such incidents, providing there is Comprehensive coverage.
Usually, vehicle insurance doesn’t cover intentional auto damages caused by policyholders or family members but covers accidental incidents. It isn’t vandalism if your angry spouse uses a baseball bat to smash your car.
A vandalism claim can be a bit tricky because of the fact that Comprehensive coverage comes with a deductible of around $500. Often motorists consider paying damages out of pocket because they aren’t much more than the deductible and they don’t want a claim affecting their vehicle insurance rates from the next renewal, especially if they aren’t going to get much money anyway.
Depending on the state and insurer, a vandalism claim can increase automobile insurance premiums. Even if you don’t get a surcharge for it, losing the claim free discount would increase costs.
After discovering vandalism damages, motorists should contact the police, don’t touch anything until it is cleared by the police, take a few pictures and try to find out if anyone has seen anything or if there are cameras in the location and contact their insurers. However, often people drive around without realizing what happened and may discover the damage at a later time.
They can still claim for it, if the repairs cost well over the deductible amount. Nevertheless, it may be a prudent thing to see if keying scratches will buff off before reporting a claim. In any case, it makes sense to get a few repair quotes for isolated incidents and negligible damages and decide if you want to make a claim or not.
It is worth noting that motorists are required to take the right steps to make sure their automobiles don’t sustain any consequential damages after vandalism. Insurers may not be happy to know that they left the vehicle uncovered after windows were smashed by someone else and it sustained serious water damage due to rain. They may agree to pay for the initial incident but not the consequential losses.
Often cars are damaged in an attempt to steal the valuable items left in it. That is why it is important to make sure you don’t leave things like cell phones in plain view. In such cases, auto insurance pays for the damages caused to the vehicle but doesn’t pay for any items left in there because they aren’t considered part of it. Motorists may need to check with their home content insurers to see if they can claim for these personal items.