It is paramount to have car insurance to be shielded against multiple risks associated with driving one. In the Philippines, it's mandatory by law to have your car insured at all times. Protection against liabilities arising out of injury/death to a third party person as a result of accident involving the insured car. CTPL (Compulsory Third Party Liability) insurance for cars and all motor vehicles is compulsory.
While the CTPL is a bare minimum insurance cover only the statutory requirements, risks and challenging arising out of injury/death of the driver, occupants of the car, damage to the insured car/theft and other factors not covered by the basic insurance cover. Assuming that such instances are not so uncommon, a comprehensive insurance will do the trick.
What is Comprehensive Auto Insurance?
An auto insurance option that aims to offer a range of coverage inclusions in addition to the mandated cover against third party liability. It aims to offer mandatory as well as optional cover and benefits. Let's list the various benefits it offers to car owners.
In case of damage to the car or its components while driving, due to fire or explosion, damage caused during the time of the vehicle being transported through various modes such as rail also finds coverage. In case of theft of the car as a whole, acts of vandalism and other related criminal acts that leads to damaging the vehicle, compensation is offered on the basis of depreciation and market value of the insured car.
Note: The above may have some exclusions (depending on the insurer) such as theft of article inside the car.
Voluntary Third Party Liability (VTPL) or Excess Bodily Injury
As stated earlier, the policy also offers Compulsory Third Party Liability car insurance (CTPL) which offers up to P100,000 worth monetary benefits for medical treatment or death benefit for the third party involved in the mishap.
Damage to Third Party Property
Car owners can also look forward to relief in case of damage caused to third party property due to an accident involving the insured vehicle. It also includes damage done to other vehicles involved in a mishap with the insured car.
A comprehensive insurance also covers expenses related to death or injury to the driver or the occupants of the car in case of an accident.
Acts of Nature
Under this inclusion, compensation is offered in case of damages caused due acts of nature such as typhoon and floods. Known as the AON (Acts of Nature), this cover is available can either be offered as an optional benefit or in the policy or be an integral part.
In addition to the above, insurers also offer a host be Add On cover option to help you get the best out of the insurance on the basis of your personal risk assessment.
Coverage Add Ons
Most of the Add On covers can be easily inserted into the actual policy at an additional cost. Let's list some of the most visible options available in a car insurance.
Road Assistance: Here, you will get immediate assistance in case your car breaks down or if it is involved in an accident. Insurers will arrange for emergency assistance such as towing services, repair or replacements and other services to help you recover from the situation. If you’re someone who travels long distances frequently, signing up for road assistance helps in securing your journey.
Legal Assistance: In case of damage to a third party property/person, you may get tangled in legal hassles, owing to the law. It's paramount to bail yourself out and move in the right direction towards an amicable resolution. Legal issues drag on for months or perhaps even years, affecting your mental health. To help you overcome the legal tangles and to move in the right direction, insurers offer legal assistance by means of counselling by legal experts.
Personalized Claims Assistance: Some insurers also provide you the Add On cover option where you can get access to fast tracked claims assistance to help you in clearing the liabilities quickly, without hassles.
Loss of Use: In cases where your vehicle breaks down due to an accident or otherwise, the insurer offers to reimburse travel expenses incurred in reaching your destination if you’re car is not in a drivable condition. A few insurers also offer and provide transport service to help you in reaching the destination.
Why take an Comprehensive car insurance coverage?
By now, you must have been able to easily understand the need for comprehensive coverage for your car. It makes sense to pay more and buy this insurance cover than settling for a CTPL to fulfill legal obligations. It offers a plethora of benefits and shields you from both legal and monetary obligations. Most importantly, it offers peace of mind. Imagine a situation where your car is badly damaged due to an accident and needs substantial amount of repair and replacements. It would be like burning a hole in your pocket if you’re going to pay for it from your savings. A Comprehensive car insurance also doubles up as your “On Road” assistant with all the Add On and basic benefits it provides. Being covered for most of the risks lets you take on the road confidently as you have a back up.
How to Avail Comprehensive Car Insurance?
There are multiple channels you can access to sign up for a comprehensive insurance for your vehicle. If you’re buying a new car or a pre-owned unit, the dealer will arrange for a cover at the time of LTO registration. Make sure to inquire the type of insurance they will provide. You may be provided a basic cover (CTPL) as a part of the deal. Ask for a comprehensive cover instead to ensure you’re covered overall from day 1.
Otherwise, if your current car insurance is about to expire, you can sign up for a comprehensive version by either contacting your existing insurer or approaching a new one if the benefits provided by the latter is appealing. Most of the insurance companies offer online renewal, which is quick and hassle free.
Insurance Companies Offering Comprehensive Car Insurance in the Philippines
- MAPFRE Insular
- Charter Ping AN
- Paramount General Insurance
- PNB Gen
- Pacific Union
Before buying insurance, keep the following points in mind to make sure your experience is a pleasant one.
Know the term and expiry of the existing policy
If you already have a car insurance, It's paramount to keep a track of the term and expiry date of the policy to ensure the renewal is done well within the prescribed timeliness. Renewing the policy after its expiry may come at additional costs in terms of re-inspection and other procedures. You may also be eligible for additional benefits such as monetary concession on the premium amount if the renewal is done well ahead of time.
Read the fine print
Another important aspect of having an insurance is to know the in and out of the policy. It pays to be educated about the inclusions and exclusions, clauses and other terms which will help you during the claims process and at the time of renewal. Spend good time in reading the policy document as soon as you receive it.
Before buying, use both online and offline resources to read about the insurance offers with a motive to sign up for the best one, that comes closest to your requirements. To aid this research, reply upon online comparison websites to compare car insurance products offers by various insurance companies. Spend good time in understanding the pros and cons of a specific product since nobody wants to end up buying a wrong one. BankBazaar.ph is one such web portal that can assist you in this regard.
Explore the basic benefits and also focus on the Add Ons offered so that you truly get the most comprehensive cover.