Anybody who has ever been pulled over by the Alabama Highway Patrol knows the routine. A blue clad trooper in a wide brimmed hat saddles up to your vehicle, requests that you please roll down your window, and then asks for license, registration, and proof of insurance. Why tack insurance onto that list? Because Alabama is one of 29 Tort States in the U.S. And while we could go on for pages about the legal definitions and implications of that designation, what it means for the average Alabaman is that you'd better be insured per state regulations if you happen to look up and see the lights of the AHP flashing in your rearview.
What You Need and What You Don't When it Comes to Alabama Auto Insurance Quotes
While it sounds simple enough, knowing which auto insurance is the right insurance in 'Bama isn't as easy as it sounds. We're here to help. As far as getting Alabama auto insurance quotes, there are a few things you'll want to have thought about ahead of time as you talk to potential insurance providers about getting coverage. That list includes insurance required by the state, insurance you'll probably want above and beyond that, and a few extras most providers allow you to add to your policy for your own peace of mind. Here's a quick breakdown of each.
- Liability -- Liability Insurance is the insurance that the state of Alabama requires every driver to carry on their vehicles. In a nutshell, liability insurance covers potential injury to you, to others, and any property damage incurred if you get in an accident and are determined to be at fault. In Alabama that means you'll need to carry a minimum $25,000 of coverage for personal injury, $50,000 to cover injuries to others, and a final $25,000 to cover any damage to the property of others (including other vehicles). Keep in mind, however, that your insurance company is not going to pay out more than your policy stipulates. Any compensation owed above and beyond those numbers is going to be your responsibility to cover. That being the case, most motorists choose to pay extra for more coverage, and it isn't unusual, or a bad idea, for motorists in Alabama to carry liability insurance of $100,000/$200,000 or more, rather than the $25,000/$50,000 mentioned above.
- Collision and Comprehensive -- While liability insurance is the only auto insurance coverage that is required by the state, most drivers still choose to pay extra for some form of property damage coverage, as well. Why? Whether you rear end another vehicle while trying to find a good radio station, or have an unlucky encounter with a Southern Long Leaf Pine, the only way your insurance company is going to pay for the repairs is if you carry Collision or Comprehensive as well. Collision coverage insures your car against any of the above mentioned possibilities: if you wreck your car, your provider will either repair it or cut you a check for what it was worth at the time of the accident. What collision doesn't insure you against are non-vehicular threats like fire, flood, vandalism, and theft. In that respect Comprehensive insurance is a bit like Collision Plus. It won't matter whether you run into a tree or just take a pebble in the windshield driving down I-65, your policy is going to cover the repairs. Of course, your bill is going to reflect this elevated coverage in the form of higher monthly premiums, so be sure paying out for these extra coverages is worth the investment. If your car is worth less than $2,000, for example, you'll probably end up paying out more in premiums than your vehicle is ultimately worth.
- Bells and Whistles -- Finally, there is a slew of extra coverage that most insurance companies offer above and beyond the basics. Coverage like Rental Reimbursement Coverage (to help you pay for a rental car in the case your car goes into the shop), Towing, and Medical Payments Coverage, are optional and there for the taking if they'll help you sleep better at night.
Finding the Best Alabama Auto Insurance Quotes for You
Now that you know what coverage you need, and what coverage you might want, you're ready to go on the hunt for auto insurance quotes. Realize that there are things beyond your control in searching out good providers and affordable rates. Everything from your past driving history, to the make and model of your car, to where you live, can and will influence how much you're going to have to pay out. That said, the secret to getting good rates really isn't much of a secret at all: the more you shop around, the better rates you're going to find. Consumers who aren't afraid to hit the pavement and drum up a host of quotes and estimates are going to find the best Alabama auto insurance rates every time.