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      Understanding car insurance

      Valbona Bushi

      Issue date: 4/10/09 Section: News
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      I remember when I turned 15 and a half, and I could finally receive my temporary driver's license. I had the perfect plan to be driving as soon as the law allowed it. The dream of owning a car and being independent felt so close. Only now do I realize, as the proud owner of a Honda Civic, that the dream has led to a few more costs than I ever considered.

      Outside of maintenance and licensing fees, one of the biggest costs is insurance. Though your parents may have helped you along so far, it's important to understand the associated costs because some day you will have to face those same costs yourself.

      Know the coverage that you're buying, as car insurance is required by law in every state.

      Auto policy - This is insurance that is bought as a contract (monthly, semi-annually or annually) where payments are agreed upon and stay fixed for the contract term. Read the coverage limits carefully and make sure to clarify.

      Bodily injury coverage - This protects you from potential lawsuits as it covers any individuals injured because of you. A minimum amount is usually required, but you can increase it.

      Collision & comprehensive coverage - these cover collisions and theft. While these are optional, they definitely limit your out-of-pocket expenses in some cases.

      Deductible - This is the amount of money that you're willing to pay first out-of-pocket before the insurance coverage begins. Usually the higher this is, the lower your insurance rates but make sure you have this amount of money stashed away and more, in case emergencies come up.

      Exclusions - Because of this, it is important to understand what exactly is covered and not covered. Usually this is a separate section in your policy that states, for example, that the insurance company will not cover anything resulting from intentional or reckless behavior.

      File a claim - No matter what the accident, it's important to file a claim with your company immediately after. Also, if you are in an accident, don't admit fault or the other party might take advantage of the situation. Your company then will most likely send an appraiser and conduct a physical exam if necessary.
      Continued...
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      In This Issue

      News

      • From newspapers to the net: famed editor delivers lecture on future of journalism
      • G20 protest in London: A firsthand account
      • ITS prepares for mail switch
      • New USG president to be chosen tonight: Douglas or Pinder
      • Sigma Phi Epsilon, Phi Mu win Greek Week competition
      • Understanding car insurance
      • Village at 115 awarded LEED Silver rating

      Sports

      • Baseball: Spartans bring brooms vs. Bethany, Grove City
      • Softball gets out of jams, into wins
      • Spartan Spotlight: Clay Hurley
      • Tennis: Women snap losing streak
      • Track & Field: Women's track takes fifth, men take ninth at DePauw
      • Ultimate: Women Gobies have fighting chance at regionals
      • Water polo workhorses

      Fun Page

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      Opinion

      • Community Supported Agriculture benefits both consumers, farmers
      • Don't let weather dictate your mood
      • Editorial: Administration should take responsibility for CSP
      • Students find motivation to serve in local, international efforts
      • Test bank not issue of Greeks versus non-Greeks
      • Coverage of AIB was slanted
      • Progress on test bank available

      Focus

      • Andrew Bird charms crowd with musicianship, melody and humor
      • CIM Orchestra to hold inspirational concert at Severance
      • Eldred delivers a solid ensemble performance with their latest, Stage Door
      • New movie review site combines Facebook with Rotten Tomatoes
      • Secret Ingredient: Pineapple
      • Sex and Dating: Serial Monogamy
      • Spartans of Style: Back to the '80s
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