Leaving your car safely in the parking lot as you run out to the grocery store, you return to find it burglarized, and your belongings are nowhere around. The first question you ask yourself after having been the victim of theft is, “Does my auto insurance cover it?”. The answer to whether or not auto insurance covers theft depends on the situation and the type of insurance you have. A comprehensive policy will typically cover thefts, as well as damage caused by break-ins. Since liability insurance usually covers bodily injury and property damage from accidents, theft is unlikely to be covered. In case of car theft, you’ll want to know what your insurance will cover. Let’s examine a few different scenarios.
Car Theft And Insurance Scenarios
Scenario 1: Car Damages Are Due To a Break-In
As long as your coverage is comprehensive, you’re in good shape. In general, comprehensive insurance covers your vehicle’s repair costs, including:
- Broken door locks;
- Smashed windows;
- Broken ignition system
Scenario 2: Stolen Car
Scenario 3: There Were Stolen Items In Your Car
Is car insurance going to cover stolen goods? Sadly, it does not. The comprehensive coverage only extends to the parts and components that are permanently attached to the car. The insurance does not cover any personal belongings you may leave inside, like an iPod or a wallet. However, homeowners’ or renters’ insurance policies are likely to cover these items. For a stolen vehicle, file two separate insurance claims, one with your auto policy and the other with your homeowners’ insurance.
What To Do With Stolen Vehicle Or Truck
You should contact the police immediately if someone stole your car or truck. By all means, the police will be interested in basic information like the make, model, plate number, and possibly even the VIN. You can then contact your insurer to find out if you are covered. Contact your homeowners or renters insurance carrier if you believe personal items were in the car when stolen. Do these things as soon as possible. Your claim process will be faster, and the chances of finding your car will increase. If you successfully file a claim, many insurance companies will use your vehicle’s actual cash value (ACV) in determining your payout. You will also have to consider the terms of your policy when calculating the total. Insurance company adjusters determine the value of your vehicle based on its age, model, make, and regular wear and tear. You can also consider upgrades such as premium seats or wheels you have made, but not additions like a premium stereo or music player you can remove. Usually, if the adjuster comes up with a value for your car, you’ll receive a check for that amount minus any deductible you have on your policy.
In a Nutshell
Remember that not all policies offer coverage if your vehicle is broken into or stolen when choosing car insurance. Collision and liability insurance aren’t enough to protect you. Comprehensive and third-party fire and theft insurance cover car theft, but it doesn’t cover your personal belongings inside the vehicle. For this, you must contact the company that issued your homeowners’ or renters’ policy to expedite the process, file a police report and insurance claim as soon as possible. It will allow you to replace your vehicle as quickly as possible.