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When you are buying insurance in Missouri you may say, "Show me the money!" In the show me state, there are savings to be had by comparing quotes from many different insurance providers.

The first line of business is to identify what insurance minimums keep you legal to drive in Missouri.

  1. $25,000 bodily injury liability
  2. $50,000 per accident bodily injury liability
  3. $10,000 in property damage liability per accident

From there you may be wondering how much insurance you need to buy beyond those low minimums. You should always buy more than the minimum insurance if you can afford it. The reason is that most cars cost tens of thousands of dollars.

If you are responsible for causing a multi-vehicle wreck, then your $10,000 minimum property damage liability insurance is wiped out very quickly.

Buy sufficient insurance to cover assets as much as possible. The purpose of having liability is to create a financial blanket that protects you.

Buy too little insurance and you will be on the defensive and forced to hire costly attorneys. The role of insurance is to assume the risk for you. Instead, the insurer uses their attorneys and hopefully keeps you out of court.

Along with property and bodily injury liability insurance coverage, a minimum coverage against uninsured drivers isĀ also required. Uninsured insurance minimums are at $25,000 per person for bodily injury and $50,000 per accident that an uninsured driver causes.

Uninsured motorists are rampant, especially during economic downturns. Not every driver can afford to buy more than the low minimum legal coverage, so often this line of insurance covers against underinsured drivers as well.

Protecting Your Vehicles

In addition to insurance required by Missouri, there is another level of insurance you may have to buy. If you have an existing loan or are leasing your car, then you are obligated to have comprehensive and collision coverage.

Comprehensive is often confused with what people call "full coverage." There is no such thing as full coverage. Comprehensive provides insurance coverage written in your policy, which basically includes anything unrelated to driving accidents.

Collision covers what it says, accidents arising from an impact. Read policy details for more information on what is included and more importantly, excluded from your coverage.

Demonstrating Proof of Insurance

Always carry your proof of insurance with you so that you may show cops you have coverage. In Missouri, you are allowed to demonstrate what is also called proof of financial responsibility.

That means, you have surety bond, real estate bond, or deposit cash negotiable securities to demonstrate that you can in lieu of liability insurance.

There is another way to demonstrate insurance coverage, though it only applies to religious organizations and companies. It is having self-insurance coverage and is issued by the Missouri Department of Revenue.

When buying insurance coverage, there are a few more tips to know:

  1. Limits pertain to the maximum your car insurance coverage will pay on claims
  2. Deductibles indicate how much your insurer requires you pay when you file a claim
  3. You may reduce maximum coverage and increase or decrease deductibles
  4. Where you live, safety and security devices, and how far you drive annually will all influence your rates
  5. Having a claims-free driving record will help you save money when buying insurance
  6. Adding teenagers to insurance increases rates.

Comparing Apples to Apples

Now that you have some of the basics of car insurance down, it is time to shop around for coverage.

When comparing the quotes from different carriers, make sure you are looking at equal limits and deductibles. Otherwise, the estimates are difficult to size up fairly.

Also, double-check the quotes to make sure that you have all the coverage at the correct limits and deductibles. The beauty of quote systems is that you may change around coverage amounts to demonstrate how much you may save.

Surprising Insurance Coverage

For instance, if you are on the fence about buying rental car coverage, find out how much it would add to the policy. If it costs $30 to have three months of rental car usage following an accident, then that may be the best $30 you will have ever spent.

Some carriers do offer roadside assistance for a comparatively reasonable fee when contrasted against auto clubs charges.

Though, make sure you understand, if you call the insurance company for assistance with a flat tire, it probably counts as an insurance claim. Again, always read the insurance policy information to make sure you understand what you are buying.

Saving Money on Car Insurance

Take the following steps to save on car insurance:

  • Pay bills on time to earn a healthy credit score
  • Only buy coverage from credit-worthy carriers
  • Pay the policy in full to save on installment fees
  • Buy multiple types of insurance from the same carrier
  • Take safe driving classes that are honored by your insurer

Check These Sites for Credit-worthy Carriers

A.M. Best, Moody's, Weiss Ratings, and Fitch Ratings are among the companies that rate corporations, including insurance carriers on fiscal health.

In general, look for any grades in the 'A' category and up. The idea is that the higher the grade, the better financial stability and deeper financial resources an insurance carrier has.

What that means for you is that the insurance carrier will have money to pay out on any claims you make.

Buying insurance does not have to be a long, drawn-out process. Make it fun by making a game of saving money. Just make sure you do not whittle down premiums so much that you are not properly covering yourself.

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