What is car insurance?

Car insurance covers damage to your vehicle and protects you financially if you're liable for someone else's injuries or damages. Auto insurance can also pay for medical bills if you or your passengers are injured in an accident or you're hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver. Your policy protects you up to certain limits, agreed upon by you and your insurer.

Do I need car insurance?

Auto insurance is required in all states except New Hampshire (New Hampshire still requires financial responsibility if you cause an accident, so you'll want to be properly insured). Driving without insurance can result in a fine, license suspension, or even jail time. Progressive, and most other insurers, will ensure any policy you select meets your state's requirements.

What does auto insurance cover?

Auto insurance covers a variety of mishaps that can occur on or off the road. Although coverages may vary by state, these are the standard coverages on most auto insurance policies:

  1. Liability

    Auto liability coverage is required in 49 states. If you're found at fault in an auto accident, liability coverage can pay for damage to other vehicles, damage to objects, injuries to other drivers and their passengers, and lawsuits if you're sued due to an accident.

  2. Comprehensive

    Comprehensive coverage protects against damage to your car from events beyond your control, including theft, windshield and glass damage, vandalism, falling trees and more.

  3. Collision

    Collision coverage covers your vehicle if it overturns or collides with another vehicle or object, including trees, guardrails, and fences.

  4. Medical Payments/Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

    Medical payments coverage is offered in most states, while personal injury protection is a broader coverage that is available only in the states that require it to be offered. Both cover medical bills if you or your passengers are injured in a car accident (regardless of fault).

  5. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UIM) and Property Damage (UMPD)

    UIM can pay for injuries caused to you and your passengers when you're hit by a driver with no insurance or not enough coverage. UMPD can pay to repair or replace your vehicle if it's damaged in an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver.

  6. Other optional coverages

    Includes rental car reimbursement, loan/lease payoff (also known as gap coverage), and roadside assistance.

Explore more auto insurance coverage options with Progressive.

What does car insurance not cover?

A basic car insurance policy won't cover wear and tear, people who regularly drive your car but aren't listed on your policy, and driving on a ridesharing platform. However, you can sometimes add coverage or purchase a separate policy or warranty to cover the things your auto policy doesn't. For example, you can add rideshare coverage to your Progressive auto policy.

How is car insurance priced?

Insurers consider many factors when pricing your auto policy, including your age, driving history, location, and type of car. Learn more about car insurance cost factors and the average cost of car insurance.

What is a car insurance premium?

Your auto insurance premium is the amount of money you pay your car insurance company in exchange for coverage. You generally have the option to pay your premium monthly or in full.

What is a car insurance deductible?

Your deductible is the out-of-pocket expense you pay before your insurer will cover your claim.

For example, you have a $500 deductible, hit a telephone pole, and your car repairs cost $2,000. You'll pay $500, and your insurer pays the remaining $1,500. You can choose your deductible amount from the options offered by your insurer.

The higher your deductible, the more of the claim expense you're responsible for. That means your out-of-pocket costs will be higher, but you'll have a lower overall rate, and vice versa.

Does car insurance cover maintenance?

Maintenance, mechanical failures, and wear and tear to your vehicle aren't covered by auto insurance. If your vehicle is disabled anywhere in the United States or Canada, Progressive's roadside assistance coverage can pay for a tow to the nearest mechanic.

How to get car insurance

Online

We ask easy questions, and you customize your coverages.

Call a rep

Talk with a licensed representative who can guide you through the process.

Through an agent

Connect with an independent agent in your area.