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How Can I Get The Best Insurance Settlement on my Car When my Insurance Company Won’t Budge on the Appraisal?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 03/25/2012

Standing firm and doing your research is the best way to increase the insurance settlement.

Your insurance company is all about the bottom line. They are in business to make money; and they do so by collecting your premium, not from paying out on claims. This means that when it comes to paying you for the total loss of your vehicle, most insurance companies are going to try and pay as little as possible.

To be able to get the true value of what your vehicle may be worth from the insurance company, be prepared with information to back up what you believe is the worth of your vehicle.

First, find out what the Blue Book value is for your vehicle, so you know what value your insurance company is using. Blue Book values have different levels of how much a vehicle is worth and you want to make sure that the insurance company isn’t using the lowest one listed. This will also give you a starting point of what to request for the insurance settlement amount.

You also need to find out what similar vehicles are selling for in your area. You will want to make copies of the sales ads for the vehicles, as proof to send to the claims adjuster working your case. Use this information to back up what you claim is the value of the vehicle.

Most of all, never take the first offer that the claims adjuster presents to you. You need to stand your ground and negotiate until it reaches a reasonable, insurance settlement amount that you can live with for the value of your vehicle.


If I Got a Ticket for Running a Red Light will my Insurance Company Raise my Rates?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 03/21/2012

An increase in your insurance rates will depend on more factors than just a single ticket.

Saying an insurance company will or will not increase your rates for a single ticket is almost impossible to say for sure. There are too many other factors that also determine if a rate increase will happen.

Factor like:

• Your age

• Any past tickets

• The insurance company itself

• How many points your state assigns for this particular type of ticket

As you can see, just getting a ticket is not the only thing that will determine if or how much your insurance rates will increase.

If you already have insurance, you don’t have to report that you got a ticket. Your insurance company will pull a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) either at your renewal or every other renewal. It will be then that you will see any rate increase on your insurance; if they are going to raise it.


Can You Get a Ticket in Florida for Having No Proof of Insurance, even When Driving another Person’s Car?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 03/20/2012

In Florida, you have to carry your insurance card whenever you drive.

Yes, you can get a ticket in the state of Florida for not having proof of insurance on you when driving another person’s vehicle.

“The Financial Responsibility Law requires owners and operators of motor vehicles to be financially responsible for damages and/or injuries they may cause to others when a motor vehicle crash happens.” (Florida Driver’s Handbook)

Please note that it says “owners and operators”, not just owners. This means that if you are driving a vehicle that is not yours, you still have to have your own insurance coverage.

If a driver in Florida is caught driving without proof of insurance, per state law s. 316.646(1) you can be ticketed. The officer is allowed to give you a ticket, even if you actually have insurance, but just don’t have your insurance card on you.

You can have the ticket dismissed when you provide proof of valid insurance along with $10.00 to pay the fee to the Clerk of the Court within 30 days of receiving the ticket. You are only able to have the ticket dismissed if your insurance was valid at the time you received the ticket.


If I Get Into An Accident With My 49cc Motor Scooter, Will My Uninsured Motorist Coverage Transfer To It From My Car?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 03/13/2012

The determination of coverage is in how the vehicle is classified in this case.

My initial answer to this question was no, and I will tell you why. You can’t transfer insurance coverage from one vehicle to another.

As I thought about it more though, a 49cc motor scooter is not considered a motor vehicle that has to be insured or registered in most states. It is considered a moped or even a “push bike” in some places. Because the uninsured motorist coverage will cover your injuries if you are hit by an uninsured driver while riding your bike, I believe that the coverage will transfer in this case.

In all reality though, because of complicated state laws and insurance loopholes; you really need to consult your insurance agent on this.


Can I still carry U.S. Car Insurance if I am Going to School in Canada?

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Ask An Insurance Question Last Updated: 02/10/2012

A U.S. car insurance policy is only valid if you are visiting Canada.

If you are living in Canada, the Canadian government requires that you carry Canadian car insurance. It is understandable that as a student you may still be a United States citizen and only in the country temporarily, but you are still living there.

The only time that the Canadian government will accept United States car insurance as proof of proper insurance coverage is if the driver is in the country as a tourist. Even then they still have to have a special card on hand issued by their U.S. car insurance company as proof of insurance extending into Canada.

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