Does My Auto Insurance Policy Cover a Stolen Vehicle?
If you’ve ever had your car stolen, you know what a major pain, inconvenience and expense this can be. According to Colorado Crime Statistics, in 2018 , 21,000 vehicles were stolen across the state. Almost 16,000 cars were eventually recovered but that means 5,000 people will have to replace their car, most likely before they were planning on it.
The good news is that if you carry ‘Comprehensive’ coverage on your auto policy, you will be reimbursed for the market value of your car by your insurance carrier. And most companies will not ‘surcharge’ you or increase your rate due to a comprehensive insurance claim. Like many things in life, prevention is good way to avoid the hassle and expense of having your car stolen. Below are a few of the expenses and hassles you can avoid.
30 Day Waiting Period
Most insurance carriers require a 30 day waiting period before they will pay to replace your car. This is to allow time for the local police to locate your car, alleviating them from paying a claim. This means you will have to find an alternative mode of transportation during this time period.
Rental Car Coverage
If you were smart enough to purchase ‘rental car’ coverage on your auto policy, the insurance carrier will pay for a ‘like kind and quality’ type of replacement vehicle for you to drive during this waiting period.
All Comprehensive Coverage on an auto policy will payout, but you would be responsible to pay the deductible amount listed on your policy, before the insurance will pay out.
Depreciated Car Valuation
After you have endured the policy waiting period and the insurance carrier has agreed to pay the market value of the car, they use the ‘depreciated value’ or ‘market value’ of the car as the valuation basis. This means they will pay you the approximate value of the car that you could reasonably get if you had sold the car to a private party in your area. While most carriers are ethical in this valuation, you most likely will loose the equity value you had in the car, and of course your deductible.
Being the victim of a car theft is not fun and can be expensive, therefore taking preventative measures is good way to protect yourself from being a victim.
7 Tips To Prevent Your Car from Being Stolen
- Never leave your car running while not being attended
- Never leave your keys in your car while unattended
- While driving always keep your doors locked and windows mostly rolled up
- Try to park your car in a closed garage or in a well lit area
- Install a GPS tracking device
- Install a car alarm, but these can be a nuisance to your neighbors and have a tendancy to be ignored by the public
- Be Aware if Your Car is on the List of the Most Stolen Vehicle Type
The agents at Denver West Insurance Brokers always recommend carrying Comprehensive coverage on your auto policy until your car drops in value where the replacement value of the car (less your deductible) doesn’t make sense to carry the coverage. Give us a call today! We’ll help you decide what auto coverage makes the most sense for your household. We are a local independent insurance brokerage located on the west side of Denver in Golden Colorado. We serve the communities of Arvada, Wheat Ridge, Lakewood, Morrison, Evergreen and Littleton.