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Minimum Modesto Car Insurance is Bad

Written by Michele Wilmonen. Posted in Research Last Updated: 07/28/2014

Carrying the minimum amount of Modesto car insurance is really not something you should do.

modesto car insurance

Don’t get yourself in a prickly position by not having enough Modesto car insurance.

Most Modesto drivers assume that the State of California requires a Modesto car insurance with state minimum coverage be purchased before they are able to drive their vehicle.  This is only partially true.

The State of California does not require that a car insurance policy be purchased, but rather some form of Financial Responsibility to show that you can pay for the aftermath of a car accident that you cause. Just be aware that the minimums that are required by California aren’t even close to what a car accident can cost financially.

Proof of Financial Responsibility

As long as you have one of the following, the State of California will allow you to register your vehicle and drive:

  1. Motor vehicle liability insurance policy
  2. Cash deposit of $35,000 with DMV
  3. DMV-issued self-insurance certificate
  4. Surety bond for $35,000 from a company licensed to do business in California

Modesto Car Insurance Requirements

If you choose to go with having a motor vehicle liability insurance policy as your financial responsibility, it has to carry at least the following coverage:

  • $15,000 for injury/death to one person
  • $30,000 for injury/death to more than one person
  • $5,000 for damage to property

Minimum Requirements Not Enough

When was the last time you were able to buy a brand new car in Modesto for $5,000?

If you cause a car accident that ends up with the other person’s vehicle having to be totaled, you are on the hook for buying them a new car. Oh sure, your car insurance company will pay for the first $5,000 of it, but you will have to find a way to pay for the rest.

With the average price of a new car or truck being around $32,000 (Kelley Blue Book), that $5,000 payment from your Modesto car insurance company will still leave you with $27,000 to make up for.  If you can’t pay for that all at once, you might get lucky and they will allow you to make payments  and if you are still making payments on your car that will leave you making two car payments for a number of years. Can you afford to make two car payments?

So talk to your Modesto car insurance agent today about getting a decent amount of insurance coverage to protect you from financial distress in the future.

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Michele Wilmonen

Michele's first introduction to insurance was working for a major insurance company as a file clerk and a mailroom supervisor in a regional office. She learned insurance directly from underwriters and claims adjusters from questions and also watching them do their job. Since then, she's earned a number of insurance certifications from the Insurance Institute of America and also a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Idaho. She blogs at Car Insurance Guidebook.

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