Auto Insurance in Chicago

You and Your Auto Insurance: Driving in Chicago

Chicago, Illinois is situated on the shore of the fifth largest body of fresh water in the world, Lake Michigan. Known as the Windy City, Chicago embodies the core of America’s heartland values — hard work, integrity and community.

Be an educated consumer when purchasing auto insurance and driving in the Windy City.

Here are some common auto insurance myths to consider. Base your insurance coverage decisions on accurate information, not myths!

Eight Auto Insurance Myths

Myth #1: Your Chicago auto insurance premium is determined by car color.

Is your car red? Green? Purple? Insurance companies have no interest in your car’s color.

The type of car you drive? That matters!

Other factors that are important to your Illinois auto insurer:

Are you buying new or used?

  • What is your driving history?  Your credit rating?
  • What was the sticker price of your car? Do you need gap insurance to meet the difference between what you paid and the replacement value?
  • Are there anti-theft devices? Daytime running lights?
  • Have you had previous accidents?
  • How many miles do you drive per year?

Myth #2: It costs more to insure your car in Chicago as you get older.

Actually, the opposite is true.

  • At age 55 you may qualify for a 3-year reduction in your Chicago auto insurance premium  upon successfully completing an accident prevention course.  Check AARP, AAA, and your auto insurance carrier for approved courses.
  • Retired? Not employed full time? You may qualify for up to a 5% discount.

Myth #3: Credit rating does not affect insurance premiums.

Credit rating matters as an indicator of how you manage financial affairs.  Know your credit rating when changing carriers / renewing auto insurance policies.

Myth #4: Auto insurance automatically covers stolen and vandalized cars, or damages caused by falling trees, fire, floods or hail.

Comprehensive and Collision coverage cover these contingencies and are optional.  You must specifically add them to your policy for additional premiums.

  • Older cars or cars less than 10 times an insurance premium provide an opportunity to save by not carrying Comprehensive or Collision coverages.
  • However, consider purchasing Comprehensive and Collision coverage to fully protect a newer car from all types of damage.

Myth #5: You only need to carry the minimum auto liability insurance required by law.

Most states require you to purchase minimum auto liability coverage amounts. Often, accidents will cost more than these minimum limits.  So while you legally and technically only need to carry minimum coverage, choose your liability insurance amounts carefully to avoid out of pocket expenses in the event of an accident.

Myth #6: Other people drive your car.  In the event of an accident, their auto insurance will provide coverage.

The auto insurance policy specific to a vehicle provides the primary coverage in most states.  That means that the car owner’s insurance must pay for damages caused in the event of an accident.  Be familiar with Illinois auto insurance policies if you allow someone else to drive your car in Chicago.

Myth #7: Auto insurance costs more for soldiers than for civilians.

All military personnel qualify for a discount. Documentation simply needs to be provided to your carrier. Some insurance carriers also provide discounts for former military personnel and their family.

Myth #8: Your personal auto insurance policy automatically covers the business use of your vehicle.

Personal auto insurance policies do not automatically protect the business use of your car.  Make sure you are aware of employees’ driving records if they are to use your car. Make it a habit to check these records twice a year.

Enjoy driving in Chicago, The Windy City!

 

Resources:

Insurance Information Institute www.iii.org