Steps to Take After a Car Accident

No one plans to get into a car accident. Yet these mishaps happen daily, but many people don’t know what to do. If you are involved in an accident, Berks County Insurance serving Reading, PA, recommends you take the following steps to protect yourself and your passengers after an accident.

What is Required at the Scene

Never leave the scene of an accident, as this act violates the law. If you do so, you could face additional criminal and civil liability. If you can do so, pull off to the side of the road to conduct assessments and make the following tasks safer.

Assess Conditions

As soon as possible, assess the conditions of all passengers in your vehicle. If needed, call 911 and ask for an ambulance if someone needs immediate medical attention. Once you have determined everyone’s condition, contact the police and ask them to come to the scene. Having police document your accident is essential, as it can help prove liability for the incident.

Exchange information with other drivers, no matter who is at fault. You’ll need to provide basic contact information, as well as your insurance information. If witnesses are available, get their contact information, too. In addition to police reports, you can use the information these people provide to give to your insurance company. 

Ensure Your Disclose All Facts

Contact your vehicle insurance company as soon as possible about the incident and provide all pertinent facts. Even if you don’t feel injured, visit a doctor soon afterward for an assessment. Your passengers should also get assessed, as some injuries do not manifest immediately.

Always practice defensive during, but get auto insurance to protect yourself fully. For help selecting your auto insurance policy, contact the professionals at Berks County Insurance, serving Reading, PA.

It is Against the Law to Drive Without Car Insurance – Make Sure You Have It

Do you live in or near Reading, PA? Are you a licensed driver? Did you know it is illegal to drive without auto insurance? Berks County Insurance can provide the insurance you need.

Driving without insurance is required in 48 out of the 50 states. Only Virginia and New Hampshire do not require it.

The primary purpose of auto insurance is to protect cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles. It provides financial protection against bodily injury or physical damage from a collision and against any liability you could face from that collision.

It also provides additional financial protection against vehicle theft and any damage to the vehicle sustained due to weather, natural disaster, keying, or damage sustained by hitting stationary objects.

The types of car insurance are:

  • Liability is a requirement in 48 states. Drivers need at least the minimum liability coverage defined by state law. Liability coverage consists of bodily injury liability that helps pay for costs related to another individual’s injuries if you are at fault. Property damage liability helps pay for any damage you cause to another individual’s property while driving.
  • Collision coverage is usually optional. However, it could be required by the vehicle’s lender or leaseholder. If you hit something, such as a tree or fence, collision coverage helps pay for the replacement or repair of your car.
  • Comprehensive covers damage resulting from theft, hail, fire, or vandalism. If a covered peril damages your vehicle, comprehensive coverage pays to replace or repair your vehicle.
  • Uninsured and underinsured coverage helps pay for medical bills or repairs to your vehicle. If you are hit by a driver that does not have adequate coverage or no coverage at all, this coverage helps.

Let Berks County Insurance get you started on your way to protecting your vehicle. Contact them today.

Pennsylvania Auto Insurance: What Does Liability Insurance Actually Cover?

The requirements for Pennsylvania auto insurance include liability insurance. You are required to get liability insurance for injuries per person, and per accident. You are also required to get property damage liability auto insurance in Pennsylvania.

Liability insurance is intended to cover your costs in the event that you are found to be liable for another party’s damages in a car accident in Pennsylvania. When you get liability insurance, you are protecting yourself from financial losses in the event of an accident.

At Berks County Insurance, we help Reading, PA drivers get the auto insurance they need so that they have enough coverage in the event of an accident.

What are the Liability Coverages in Pennsylvania?

There is bodily injury liability and property damage liability insurance in Pennsylvania. 

Bodily injury liability coverage will cover the costs up to a certain amount for medical expenses in the event of an accident where you are the liable party. You will need bodily injury coverage per person, and bodily injury coverage per accident.

Property damage liability coverage will cover the costs of damages to another person’s property in the event of a car accident for which you are found to be liable. 

Tort Coverage and Pennsylvania No-Fault Law

In Pennsylvania, when you purchase auto insurance, you have the option to purchase either Limited Tort coverage or Full Tort coverage. When you purchase Limited Tort coverage, this will limit your ability to sue another driver for pain and suffering if they are liable in an accident. 

Pennsylvania is a no-fault state, which means that your own car insurance will cover the costs regardless of who is responsible for a car crash. That includes medical and out-of-pocket expenses up to your coverage limits. 

You can fight this after a car accident with a lawsuit, and that is the only way around the no-fault law. This is something you may want to consider when looking at Limited Tort and Full Tort options.

Get a Quote

Liability insurance is not optional in Pennsylvania, but there are options within your liability insurance. At Berks County Insurance, we want Reading, PA drivers to have all the coverage they need, with the options that work best for them. Call us for a quote today.

What is the difference between liability coverage and comprehensive coverage?

As drivers, many of us may not fully understand auto insurance and what’s covered under different policies. Many of us have a general understanding of what’s required by law but little else is fully understood. The Berks County Insurance agency of Reading, PA is dedicated to making sure drivers understand their options when it comes to auto insurance. It’s simply not enough to only understand what’s legally required to drive in your state. Our agency is committed to educating drivers, not the many options available to them. One of the first things that drivers should explore is the differences between liability and comprehensive auto insurance. 

Liability Insurance…What is it? Why Do I Need it?

Liability insurance only covers damage that results from a collision. It covers damage to other people’s property, as well as any injuries that others may sustain as a result of a collision where you’re at fault. This is a limited auto insurance policy however, it’s required by law in most states. However, the state minimum requirements may vary from state to state. As a driver in Philadelphia, you are required to carry $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident. Driver’s must also carry $5,000 in property damage liability coverage as well as uninsured motorist coverage. Motorists must carry $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident. It’s important to understand that liability insurance doesn’t cover anything that’s not collision-related. Motorists need liability insurance to legally drive in the state of Philadelphia. The price difference between liability and full coverage or comprehensive insurance can be significant. Liability insurance covers injuries and damage and to other people’s property. 

Comprehensive Insurance

Comprehensive auto insurance covers both collision and non-collision related damage. Full coverage/ comprehensive auto insurance covers the cost of damage to your car and to others. Comprehensive coverage will pay for the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle. This coverage kicks in even if your car is stolen. It also covers damage your car sustains that’s unrelated to a collision. This includes damage to your car that may result from fire, wind, hail, flood, theft, and vandalism. This coverage also includes damage caused by falling objects and hitting an animal. Comprehensive auto insurance coverage isn’t required by state law. However, there are situations when a motorist might be required to carry it. If you take out a car loan or lease a car, your lender will more than likely require you to carry full coverage or comprehensive insurance. We are committed to helping motorists understand their options when it comes to auto insurance. We want to explore your options so that you understand your options and make choices that best suit your unique needs and situation. Give us a call. Were here to help.

Three steps to finding a Pennsylvania auto insurance policy

As a Pennsylvania motorist, you’re expected to carry insurance coverage that will cover any liability costs you face if you’re involved in an accident. At Berks County Insurance, we provide insurance coverage to drivers in Reading, PA.

The following are three steps you should go through when you’re finding a Pennsylvania auto insurance policy to meeting your insurance coverage obligations as a motorist. 

Learning the basics about auto insurance

Before you purchase an auto insurance policy, you need to learn about how auto insurance works. You’ll need to consider whether you want to purchase only liability coverage, or collision and comprehensive coverage as well.

You’ll also want to understand important terms like premium and deductible. The premium on your policy is how much it costs every month or every policy term. The deductible is how much you need to pay out-of-pocket before your policy starts covering accident damages. 

Getting quotes on policies

Once you’ve determined what types of coverage you want, you can get quotes from a few insurance providers on policies. It’s best to get a few different quotes. This way, you can compare the offerings of different providers.

Reading the fine print and making a choice

It’s important that you carefully review the policy details for each quote you’ve gotten. Then, you can compare these different policies and choose the best option.

Remember to not simply select the cheapest among the policies available. Instead, you should carefully evaluate the value and quality that each policy will provide you. Read the fine print and understand the key differences between each policy option. 

Do you have questions about your auto insurance options in Reading, PA? We can help you find the answers you’re looking for. Contact us at Berks County Insurance to learn more about auto insurance coverage in the Keystone State. 

Should I Take a Defensive Driving Course?

Defensive driving courses offer a variety of benefits to anyone who chooses to take them. Whether you are just learning to drive or have driven for several years, there is always something new to learn. In Reading, PA, the agents of Berks County Insurance offer their clients sound advice when it comes to their auto insurance and ways they can improve their driving.

Reinforce What You Already Know

An excellent defensive driving course will not only teach you about the rules of the road, but it will also show you what to do if you find yourself in certain situations. Safety tips are offered that can help you avoid being in an accident as well as keep your family safe if you are stranded along the side of the road. Defensive driving courses are also written to provide you with up-to-date information on what you need to do if an emergency arises.

Learn About New Laws

Another benefit of a defensive driving course is that it provides information on new laws that have been written in your state. New laws are established each year for things such as distracted driving, DUI penalties, and fines for speeding in construction zones. Information provided in these courses is continually being updated.

The agents of Berks County Insurance understand how important it is to be as knowledgeable as possible when driving on the highways and byways of the country. If you live in the Reading, PA area, you are encouraged to call one of our agents and find out how a defensive driving course can benefit you. We can answer any question you may have and give you all of the information you need to make a smart insurance decision.

When is auto insurance required in Pennsylvania?

Next to a home, one of the biggest and most valuable assets that most people in the Reading, PA area will ever buy is a car. When you own a car, you are taking on a major investment and responsibility that needs to be properly covered by insurance. There are several situations in which having an auto insurance policy will actually be a requirement for you. 

Whenever you are on the Road

For those that are driving in the state of Pennsylvania, auto insurance is a basic requirement as soon as you get out on a public road. All drivers in the state are required by law to carry at least a minimum level of liability insurance. This will ensure you have coverage to pay restitution if you are found at fault in an accident. Comprehensive and Collision coverage is highly suggested.

When you Take out a Loan

Another situation in which you will likely need to have auto insurance is if you took out a loan to buy your car. When providing a loan, a lender will want to make sure that you have a full collision and comprehensive insurance policy. This will ensure that you have ample coverage for their collateral at all times. This type of coverage will give protection against a wide variety of possible risks and situations. 

Having auto insurance in the Berks County area is a great decision to make. When you are trying to get auto insurance for your car, you need to speak with the team at Berks County Insurance first. When you reach out to the team at Berks County Insurance in Reading, PA, you will be guaranteed great insight into your coverage options. It’s always nice to have a little help when it comes to assessing your personal situation and making sure that you are getting the coverage that you need.

Should I Tell My Insurance Provider I Made Upgrades?

So, you just made a few vehicle upgrades recently. Perhaps you added in a new stereo system, or you went all out for new rims and running gear. Whatever you have decided to do, you probably invested good money in making your vehicle more your own. All of that is great, but now you’re faced with the question of whether or not you should tell your insurance provider about the upgrades. There are pros and cons to each. At Berks County Insurance, the team is on hand to help you decide what to do while living in and around Reading, PA.

Increased Value of Your Vehicle

The new upgrades to your vehicle likely increased the value of your vehicle. This means if you tell your insurance provider about the upgrades, you’ll probably pay a higher monthly premium. The difference will not be much, but you more than likely will see an increase. 

Protect Your Investment

While your monthly premium may go up, so too does your protection. This way, if your rims are ever stolen, the new radio ripped out, or you’re involved in an accident, the insurance coverage will pay for these upgrades. If you don’t let your insurance provider know about the upgrades, they will not know about the improvements and, because of this, not be able to cover the upgrades. Due to this, you’ll be left paying for the upgrades all over again. 

After upgrading your vehicle, while living around Reading, PA, you will be faced with the decision of letting your insurance provider know. At Berks County Insurance, a team member is standing by to help you with all of your automotive insurance questions and concerns, including whether you should update your auto insurance information. 

How different kinds of tires can impact your auto insurance.

Most people, when they purchase a car, don’t think of the tires. They drive away with the tires that were left on the car and thought nothing more of it. When it comes time to replace them, most people replace them with a conventional set of tires. Many aspects of a car can affect the rate on a driver’s car insurance in Berks County. This includes the vehicle’s tires.

Types of Tires

Oversized tires are viewed by many as an unnecessary risk. They change how the vehicle is driven and it alters the odometer reading and speedometer reading.   Going a faster speed than you realize can, in turn, lead to an accident. Although oversized tires are looked down upon by many, they’re still a fashionable car modification.

Another type of tire modification that has come into favor is low-profile tires, commonly called "low-pros." They look sleek and flashy because you have more wheel and less tire. The shiny chrome sparkles and glints in the sun. Unlike the dull rubber of a tire. Also, by having bigger wheels, it is easier for people to see the brakes which some paint or color to appease an aesthetic. Smaller tires do create problems for those who travel on rougher roads. Small bumps and potholes can cause your rims to bend if hit too hard.

Most insurance companies don’t charge more for vehicles with oversized tires. Remember insurance companies look at a variety of factors when deciding a driver’s rates. Berks County Insurance can work with you to help determine what might be beneficial to your policy and to your vehicle.

What is most important for your own safety, no matter what kind of tires you have, make sure that your tires are properly configured for your vehicle. If the tires do not fit the vehicle or are in poor condition, this could cause an accident. It’s well known that safer vehicles get lower rates on car insurance.

Before you modify your vehicle’s tires, contact Berks County Insurance serving all of Berks County, to see how performance tires might modify your auto insurance policy.