Everything you need to know about insurance basics, like coverage types, limits, cost and more.
Car Insurance FAQs
Car insurance is designed to protect you in many ways — but in order to appreciate the benefits, it’s important you understand how your coverage works. We’ve broken down some frequently asked questions about car insurance with American Family Insurance so you gain peace of mind and confidence in your coverage.
You can get your detailed and personalized auto quote in a few different ways:
- Get a quote online.
- Call 1-800-MYAMFAM(1-800-692-6326) and get a quote over the phone.
- Get in touch with your agent for a quote.
You’ll want to be ready with names, addresses, dates-of-birth, and numbers of accidents/violations for all drivers in your household. And having your current insurance policy or declaration page handy is helpful, too.
No, you don’t have to pay for an online quote — it’s free! At American Family Insurance, we want you to be sure you’re getting the right coverage at the right price. Be sure to check in with your agent and review your quote after receiving it. They’ll help you get the right coverage at the right price.
We’d love it if you did! But no, you don’t have to buy insurance after getting a quote. We do recommend that you get in touch with your American Family Insurance agent and review your quote. You’ll find a lot of value and real peace of mind with our coverage.
Your rate will be the same if you and your agent decide the same coverage levels, deductibles, discounts, and options you chose online, are the best options for you.
To put it simply, a deductible is the amount you’re responsible for paying in the event of an accident, damage, or loss to your vehicle. Once your deductible is paid, your insurance kicks in to cover costs, up to your policy limit.
That’s up to you, and your budget. A higher deductible means lower monthly payments, but you’ll pay more out-of-pocket if you file a claim. A lower deductible means a higher monthly payment, but will save you money if you file a claim. When you choose your deductible, think about the amount of money you’re comfortable paying out of pocket if an accident happens.
Still not quite sure what your deductible should be? Your American Family agent can help you explore what makes sense for your budget.
It depends. You may have to pay your deductible to get your car repaired and then await reimbursement for your deductible from the other insurance company. The insurance companies involved in the accident will work through the subrogation process to recover your deductible.
If you’re in an accident and your insurance company determines your car is totaled, here’s what happens next:
- Your claims adjuster will need all keys to the vehicle and will have you remove your personal items from the vehicle.
- If you’ve taken out a loan or leased your car, you’ll need to connect with your lender or leasing company to let them know American Family Insurance will be contacting them.
- Once your vehicle is considered totaled, insurance will pay you a cash settlement, which is a check in the amount of the actual cash value on your vehicle.
- If you leased the vehicle, the payment goes directly to the leasing company.
- If you financed the car, the bank or finance company will receive payment for what you still owe on the loan, with the remainder given to you.
- Of course, if you own your vehicle free and clear, you’ll get the full amount and can use it to purchase a replacement vehicle.
After an accident, you’re going to want to know what happens next. Typically, your insurance company will need you to get your car to a body shop or mechanic to make repairs. They’ll usually work with that company to get the work done after you’ve paid your deductible.
American Family Insurance’s Dreams Restored Program (DRP) can help take the worry out of choosing a qualified repair shop. What’s so great about the Dreams Restored Program? Let’s find out.
- It’s quick: Because of our direct relationship with the shops, repairs can begin sooner than at non-DRP facilities. This means your vehicle gets priority status to get you back onto the road as quickly as possible.
- It’s guaranteed: With the DRP, repairs have a lifetime workmanship guarantee backed by American Family Insurance. Now that’s peace of mind!
- It’s easy: No need for multiple estimates — our Dreams Restored Program handles all the estimates and reviews. We’ll gather some of the best in the biz to take care of you and your vehicle.
- It’s convenient: No messy billing. Instead of paying the shop yourself and getting a reimbursement from us, we keep things hassle free by receiving the bill directly and paying it (minus the deductible).
- It’s reliable: Our DRP shops meet the highest ratings for repairs and customer service.
An auto insurance policy typically covers you, your spouse/partner, relatives who live in your home, and other licensed drivers who have permission to drive your insured vehicle.
It depends. If you’re not concerned about minor cosmetic damage, your vehicle is paid for, or is on its last few good miles, then not buying comprehensive coverage could be a way to save on your insurance.
There are a number of factors that go into determining the amount of coverage you need:
- State requirements: The state you live in has a lot to do with the coverage you’ll need. Most states require liability coverage at a minimum. Your local American Family agent will know what’s required in your neck of the woods.
- Vehicle Type: The type of vehicle you drive influences the type of insurance you might consider.
- Leased or Financed Vehicles: Insuring a leased or financed vehicle will require you to carry collision and comprehensive coverage. This is how the lender or leasing company protects their investment. Once the vehicle is paid off, you can lower your premiums if you drop either collision or comprehensive coverage.
Liability coverage pays for injury or property damage to others. There are two types:
- Bodily injury liability: If you cause an accident that hurts someone else, this helps cover their injuries. It also helps protect you if you’re sued, up to your policy limit.
- Property damage liability: If you damage someone else’s property, like their mailbox or car, this helps cover the costs to repair the damages, up to your policy limit.
It’s not a good idea. In addition to hefty fines, your driver’s license and vehicle registration could be suspended. And the risks are even greater if you’re ever in an accident. Bottom line: If you’re going to drive, be insured.
Your car is insured once you and American Family agree to coverages on your policy and you make a down payment on the premium owed (you can choose to pay the full amount as well).
At American Family Insurance, we’ll mail and/or electronically make available your policy forms and Declarations of Coverage page.
Not sure if you have active coverage? You can call up your insurance company or agent, or if you’re an American Family customer, simply log into My Account where you can view your policy, proof of insurance, payment history and more.
Good question! Simply log in to My Account either on your desktop or in the MyAmfam App and click on the “Proof of Insurance” tab listed on the overview page. Don’t have My Account? No problem! Enroll today to view your proof of insurance, report claims and pay your bill in one, convenient location.
If damage to your windshield is repairable, we’ll pay for it to be fixed — no need to pay your deductible. If it can’t be repaired and needs to be replaced, you’ll be responsible for your deductible, we’ll take care of the rest. Either way, we’ll do our best to get you back on the road quickly!
It depends. Have you added Auto Rental Reimbursement Coverage to your auto policy? If you ever get in an accident and your car needs to be repaired, this add-on coverage will help pay for a rental car while yours is in the shop. Your agent can help add this smart protection to your auto policy.
It’s always best to check in with your auto insurance company before renting a car in order to verify your level of coverage for rented vehicles. Reach out to your American Family Insurance agent to be sure you’ve got the coverage you need.
Congrats on the new vehicle! Adding it to your policy is easy, just give your agent a call and they’ll help take care of the details.
Do you need to transfer your auto insurance to a different car? Thankfully, it’s a pretty easy process. Usually it’s a quick phone call to your company, where you’ll let them know your new car information, and they’ll take care of the rest. Some larger insurance companies offer the option to alter your policies online. At American Family Insurance, it’s as simple as logging into your My Account or using the MyAmFam app, adding your new car to your policy and removing the old car all at once. You can also connect with your agent or give us a call at 1-800-MYAMFAM (1-800-692-6326) and we’ll get you set up!
An SR-22 Filing is a document or electronic certification issued by an auto insurance company that verifies to the state that you have an auto insurance policy with the state minimum liability limits. If you are required to maintain this filing, you will be notified by the state.
State contact information for American Family’s 19 operating states:
- Arizona Department of Transportation 1-800-251-5866
- Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles (303) 205-5613
- Georgia Department of Motor Vehicle Safety (678) 413-8400
- Idaho Transportation Department (208) 334-8000
- Illinois Department of Driver Services (217) 782-3720
- Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (317) 232-2840
- Iowa Department of Transportation (515) 239-1101
- Kansas Driver Control Bureau (785) 296-3671
- Minnesota Driver & Vehicle Services (651) 296-6911
- Missouri Department of Revenue (573) 526-2407
- Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles (402) 471-2281
- Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (800) 344-0483
- North Dakota Motor Vehicle Department (701) 282-5070
- Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (614) 752-7700
- Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles (503) 945-5001
- South Dakota Motor Vehicles Division (605) 773-3541
- Utah Department of Motor Vehicles 1-800-DMV-UTAH (800-368-8824)
- Washington Department of Licensing (360) 902-3900
- Wisconsin Department of Transportation (608) 266-2353
An SR-22 is a financial responsibility certification that is sometimes required for high risk auto insurance customers by the state Department of Motor Vehicles or Public Safety after you have been involved in an accident with no auto insurance, or if an accident is due to excessive driving violations on your part.
The length of time required to carry the filing varies by state, but it is generally 1-5 years.
The SR-22 will remain in place until the policy is cancelled or you instruct us to remove it.
Have additional questions about SR-22? Your American Family agent is ready to help!
Did you just buy a new car or truck? Gap/Lease & Loan — otherwise known as Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP insurance), is an optional coverage for newer cars that can be added to your collision insurance policy. It can pay the difference between the balance of a lease or loan due on your new vehicle and what your auto policy will pay if the car is considered a covered total loss. Gap coverage can be a very wise move, because vehicles depreciate in value quickly and the gap between what you’ve paid and what you owe can be substantial in the event of a total loss.
Wondering if you need Gap insurance on your new car? Your American Family agent is ready to answer all your questions.
It’s advised to never go without car insurance, but sometimes situations arise where you might need to cancel your policy. Maybe you’re moving to another state, switching insurance providers or you sold your car. Whatever the case, you’re technically free to cancel a policy at any time. You can cancel your policy by contacting your agent or insurance company and let them know the exact date you want your insurance coverage to end.
The easiest and most convenient way to cancel a policy with American Family insurance is to call your agent. Not sure how to reach yours? Find them using our agent locator.
Our customer care center is also available 24/7 at 1-800-MYAMFAM (1-800-692-6326) — they can help direct you to your agent or submit a cancellation request form to your agent on your behalf.