Comprehensive Car Insurance

So, you are the proud owner of a car, what on earth will you do without your wheels? Unfortunately driving around this beautiful country of ours is not without risks. Actually, we are talking HIGH RISK here! It’s not only while you are driving or where you are going to, it is also where you live and where your car sleeps at night that influences the risk.

We continue to see an increase in accidents, thefts and burglaries. Then we have the horrors of road rage, hijacking and drive by shootings as well to think of. Well, not to worry, you have made sure your car is insured….but if you are in an accident today or your car is stolen tonight, do you know for sure that your insurance company will pay out your claim?

If you buy a car through vehicle finance you will be forced to take out Comprehensive Car Insurance and furnish the details of the policy to the institution which financed your car. Comprehensive car insurance is the most expensive form of car insurance but it provides you with the best cover, that’s why it is called comprehensive.

While we are on the topic, a word of caution: When you complete a car insurance application, answer all questions truthfully. For example, you know your car is left outside every night, yet you declare that it is kept in a locked garage; clever you, you know the premium will increase if you tell the truth. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, you are not that clever at all. If your car is stolen at night, your insurance company may, and probably will, refuse to pay out your claim.

What is included in comprehensive car insurance? We will look at the most common inclusions but never take anything for granted. Read your insurance policy document very carefully (no matter how boring it may be) and make sure that you are very clear on what is included and what not.

Comprehensive Car Insurance covers the following:

  1. Damage caused by accidents.
  2. Theft.
  3. Hijacking.
  4. Vandalism.
  5. Explosions.
  6. Riot damage.
  7. Fire.
  8. Falling objects (from buildings or other vehicles.)
  9. Damage to third party property.
  10. Accidental death or injuries to third parties.
  11. Car Accessories (this is not always automatically included, so please check.)
  12. Hail damage (only if the schedule states that it is included.)
  13. Snow storms, hurricanes, earthquakes. These are termed “acts of God”, it is an act beyond human control.
  14. The canopy of the pick-up (only if the schedule states that it is included.)
  15. Sound System (only if the schedule states that it is included.)
  16. Car hire – while the vehicle is being repaired or if it is stolen. The maximum time will be specified in your policy.
  17. Medical costs – within the limits as specified in your policy.
  18. Towing and storage costs. You must advise the insurance company in case of an accident and they will arrange towing through an approved towing operator appointed by the company. If you use another towing company your insurer will not pay for the cost thereof.

When you will NOT be payed out on Comprehensive Insurance?

Just as important as knowing WHAT and WHEN they will pay is to know what is not covered.

  1. When the vehicle is not roadworthy. It is automatically assumed by the insurance company that your car is roadworthy. Should you be in an accident and your tyres are found to be totally worn, you will not be covered; even worse you are open to prosecution.
  2. Driving without a license, under the influence of alcohol or drugs or where the license has been endorsed.
  3. Unauthorised use, where someone drives your vehicle without your permission.
  4. Cover under the Road Accident Fund – items covered under the fund will not be paid by the insurer.
  5. Vehicles used in the motor trade, used to earn an income, for racing.
  6. Vehicles used in countries outside South Africa.

Did you know?

According to research only 15% of all the cars on South African roads are comprehensively insured. The scary thought is that should you be involved in an accident the guilty party may not have any or sufficient insurance.

Can you actually afford NOT having Comprehensive Insurance?