WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2020
Animals can cause hefty damage to your vehicle both inside and out. In many cases, animal damage is covered by your car insurance policy. There are some policies with certain exclusions, however, so it’s important to be aware of what your policy does and does not cover.
Keep in mind that these types of damages are covered under comprehensive coverage auto insurance. Comprehensive coverage covers damages to your vehicle due to accidents not involving collision, such as fire and falling objects. If you don’t have comprehensive coverage on your auto insurance policy, you will not have coverage for most animal-related damages. The one exception is that some damages may be covered under collision instead, such as if you strike an animal on the road.
If you accidentally hit an animal while driving on the road, your car insurance is likely to cover the damages and any injuries you or your passengers may sustain. Animals have an unfortunate habit of jumping in the road or crossing in the middle of the day. Small animals like squirrels may not affect your car at all while larger animals, such as deer and bears, can end up totaling your vehicle.
If you do strike an animal on the road, be sure to stop and investigate from a safe distance. If the animal is alive, call the proper authorities. If it is dead, you may need to call for someone to come clean it up, especially if it is larger and in the way of other vehicles. If a collision with an animal causes any sort of damage to your vehicle, stop immediately in case there are dangerous damages you can’t see.
Rodent Bites and Scratches
Car insurance should generally cover you if a rodent manages to get into your vehicle and cause havoc. If an animal like a raccoon tears up your seats and chews up your steering wheel, your car insurance policy may help pay for the damages. The same applies if the rodent somehow manages to chew through wires. If you find a rodent or proof of rodent damage in your vehicle, be sure not to drive until you are completely sure it is safe.
Sometimes, animals are looking for somewhere warm to curl up or even live. It’s not uncommon for stray cats to curl up in wheel wells during the winter or birds to find their way under the hood of a vehicle to build a nest. Always check both areas before getting into your vehicle, even during the summer. Damage to your engine from a nest can be serious and cause great mechanical issues. This is usually covered by car insurance, although engine damage can be expensive and difficult to cover.
Make sure your policy is comprehensive enough to cover repairs to your engine in case of an incident.
While most wild animal damages are covered under auto insurance, auto insurance may not cover damages your pet causes. If your dog grows bored in the back seat during a long road trip and tears a large hole in the seat, for example, your car insurance policy is unlikely to cover the damages. When transporting pets, make sure the animals are created, secured and otherwise occupied to avoid accidents and distractions while you’re driving.
Personal Belongings Inside the Vehicle
Believe it or not, the items you leave in your car are usually not covered by car insurance. If a wild animal somehow gets into your car and wreaks havoc, your car insurance may cover damages to your vehicle, but it likely won’t cover any damage to your personal belongings that were left inside.
Instead, your items may be covered if you have a home insurance policy or renters insurance policy. Both types of insurance have personal belongings coverage, which provides compensation if your personal items are lost or damaged due to fire, wind, hail, smoke, lightning, theft, vandalism and more. Animal damage may be covered by this, as well.
Keep in mind that the same exclusions apply when it comes to pets. If your pet ruins your personal belongings, a home or renters insurance policy will not compensate you for the damages.
Be sure to review your car insurance policy if you have any questions about your coverage. Car insurance is a common coverage that is easily misunderstood, leaving many drivers not properly covered after an unexpected event. You will especially want to know what animal damages are covered under your policy if you use your vehicle to frequently travel or camp.
Post a Comment
Required (Not Displayed)
All comments are moderated and stripped of HTML.
NOTICE: This blog and website are made available by the publisher for educational and informational purposes only.
It is not be used as a substitute for competent insurance, legal, or tax advice from a licensed professional
in your state. By using this blog site you understand that there is no broker client relationship between
you and the blog and website publisher.