Bedford Car Insurance
Bedford, Texas is conveniently located right dab in the middle of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.
Because of this, and the fact that Bedford a lot of amenities, the city has been given an exceptionally livable score. Unfortunately, even though Bedford is small, it's a car-dependent city. Most errands require a car and there are very few 'walkable' neighborhoods.
If you're relocating to Bedford, you'll more than likely need a vehicle to navigate around.
Not only do you need to find an affordable car to buy, you'll also need to find affordable insurance to cover it. Before you start to shop around, it's wise to learn about the insurance laws that apply in Bedford and other coverages that you can purchase.
You Must Have Auto Insurance at All Times
Once you buy a car, it's your responsibility to have insurance. That's because Texas state law says that auto insurance is mandatory.
Since auto insurance laws are dictated by state officials, all residents in Bedford who own vehicles that are registered through Texas Department of Motor Vehicles must maintain a minimum amount of car insurance.
How much insurance are you required to carry under the law?
Texas operates under tort law. This means that whenever you have an auto accident that results in injury, it's the at-fault parties job to pay for the victim's damages.
That's why you're required under the vehicle cost to carry Bodily Injury Liability and Property Damage Liability coverage to pay for third-party expenses. Here are the required limits:
- Bodily Injury Liability: $30,000 per person, $60,000 per accident
- Property Damage Liability: $25,000 per accident
- Basic minimum limits are written 30/60/25
Do you need to raise your limits of liability?
Since there's a lot of exposure to loss, it's important to consider raising your limits of liability for a greater level of asset and financial protection. Most experts recommend carrying at least100/300/100 in liability.
Are there a lot of uninsured drivers in the county?
Driving without insurance is against the law. Unfortunately, since it's a crime that you can easily commit, many people decide to violate the law.
It's best to get an accurate snapshot of how vulnerable you are before you assume that you don't have to worry about getting into an accident with an uninsured motorist.
In the state of Texas, about 13.3 percent of drivers statewide don't maintain their auto liability coverage.
While the problem is still evident in Tarrant County, the latest statistics show only about 12.61 percent of drivers in Bedford and surrounding areas don't have insurance. Based on the population in Bedford, about 5900 don't have coverage in your local community.
All Texas Auto Insurance Providers are Required to Offer Uninsured Motorist
If a provider is licensed by the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) to sell personal car insurance products, they must offer all applicants a written option to buy Uninsured Motorist Protection.
Uninsured Motorist Protection (UM) is a benefit offered to combat the growing problem uninsured motorists present to responsible consumers.
UM pays for your medical expenses when you're involved in a crash with a driver who doesn't have any liability insurance or who has very minimal coverage. It acts like third-party liability insurance when you have damages and the liable party is unable to pay.
Instead of hoping you'll see a judgment after going to court, you'll have protection.
While the TDI does require carriers to offer you coverage, you're in no way obligated to purchase it. If you decide you don't want it, you must put that down in writing. There is an automatic $250 deductible for UM coverage for those who do carry UM Protection.
Since you're vulnerable to drivers in the DFW-area, you should carry UM.
What is Personal Injury Protection?
Texas has unique auto insurance laws because it's a tort state that offers consumers the option to buy Personal Injury Protection.
Personal Injury Protection, which generally goes by PIP, is a no-fault coverage that's required in each of the 12 no-fault states. Instead of being a requirement, Texas officials have mandated that consumers must have the option to buy it.
Personal Injury Protection pays for your medical bills and other related financial losses when you're in an accident.
Since it's a no-fault coverage, it doesn't matter who's at fault for the accident. Here's a breakdown of what TX PIP pays for when you file a claim for yourself or a vehicle occupant:
- $2500 in reasonable medical expenses
- 80% of lost income
- Cost of hiring a caregiver
- Other costs for services needed for daily living
Do you really need to get Personal Injury Protection?
Before you sign a rejection form you should consider just why you might need Personal Injury Protection. The coverage can help make your recovery easier even when you have medical insurance and disability insurance.
Here's a list of the reasons why it's best to pay a minimal amount for PIP coverage:
- The health care cost index in Bedford is high so the cost of treatment is high
- If you have a high copayment, the coverage will help you cover it
- If you have a high deductible, your PIP can help you cover it
- PIP will help you replace income when you only have a percentage of disability coverage
- PIP pays for the medical expenses of vehicle occupants
What's the cost of driving without insurance?
Texas officials take the crime of driving without insurance very seriously.
Since uninsured drivers cause millions of dollars of damage in auto accidents each year, the penalties for failing to maintain your coverage are stiff. You should think twice before you take the chance. Here are the penalties and costs you should know about:
- You could have an uninsured loss
- You could face wage garnishments or liquidation of your assets
- Fines of between $175 and $350
- A surcharge of registration fees for up to 3 years
- Fines of $350 to $1000 for second offense
- Suspension of license and registration for second offense
- Vehicle impoundment for up to 180 days and an impound fee of up to $15 per day
How does the state verify that you have coverage?
You don't need to come across a Texas officer who's in the mood to write a ticket just to face penalties.
The state has a very intelligent electronic verification system in place called TexasSure. This system gives the state the power to see who has insurance and who doesn't in real time. Insurance companies must report when your policy cancels and you'll be fined accordingly.
Does the cost of auto insurance go up when you don't have insurance?
If you let your auto insurance expire, you have to worry about more than just paying fines.
You'll also have to worry about paying more for your auto insurance premiums. Drivers who let their auto insurance lapse are classified as high-risk drivers. When someone is deemed a high-risk, they pay high premiums.
Not only do most companies surcharge uninsured drivers when they buy insurance for the first time, they also don't offer specific discounts. Since you don't have an extensive insurance history, you won't get prior insurance discounts or loyalty discounts that really help to drive your premiums down.
It pays to keep your insurance.
How do you pick a company serving the Bedford area?
Not all auto insurance companies are created equal. While the average premium charged in Texas is $895 per year, the premium that you'll pay is dependent on several different factors. That's why you should shop around. Here are some tips so that you choose a good carrier that has a good reputation:
- Find a company that has a strong financial strength grade
- Check the company's licensing status with the state and see if there is a high number of complaints through the NAIC
- Find out how you can contact the company
- Check to see if the company sells other lines of insurance
- Look for a company that offers several discounts
The only way to really price the cost of insurance is to get quotes.
If you're in a time crunch, you can use an online rate comparison and get dozens of quotes for Bedford auto insurance at once. Simply enter your zip code, choose the coverage that you want, and answer the underwriting questions for instant car insurance quotes.