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Tag Archives: Auto Insurance

Your Car Breaks Down in the Middle of Nowhere. What Do You Do?

Driving with any vehicle issues means you are taking a chance of making it to your next destination. Car troubles can be anything that includes a tire blow out to overheating of the engine. No matter what type of problem you are having, there is always a chance you will end up stranded on the side of the road. This can be both frustrating and dangerous. The best thing you can do is to have a plan if you find yourself broken down.  Use Your Hazard Lights or Emergency Flashers When you know you are going to have to pull off the side of the road, the safest way to do so is to alert any other drivers. You can do this by using your hazard lights that each vehicle is equipped with. The button is usually an orange or red triangle. This will cause your lights to start to flash in unison and is a great way to indicate to other passing drivers that you are stopping or there is trouble with your vehicle. Leave the lights on until the tow truck pulls up. Figure Out Your Location Now that you are safely pulled off the side of the road and you have your hazard lights on, you must know where you are. You can’t just call for help without any idea on where the tow truck has to pick you up. If possible, use the GPS on your phone or in your car to find your location. You want to be able to give the most accurate location to the tow truck operator so they can easily find you. This will also keep the amount of time you’re waiting on the side of the road to a minimum, lessening the chance that you’re involved in an accident or other dangers.  Exit the Car Safely Depending on where you are located, the traffic around you could be heavy. The cars that are passing may still have a hard time seeing you on the side of the road. Your safety is most important and that is why you should be careful when you are exiting the car. If possible, get out of the passenger side of the car so that you are not walking out in the oncoming traffic lane. A popped hood is the universal sign of a vehicle…
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What to Do After Your Car’s Been Broken Into

Discovering that your car has been broken into can feel quite horrible. Unfortunately, no matter how diligent you are, break-ins are always possible. They may seem almost inevitable even when you have taken extra precautions. Even if you’ve hidden away your valuables, locked your car, and parked in a well-trafficked spot, it’s still possible for a crook to target your car. If a break-in does happen, it’s important that you know how to handle it quickly and efficiently. First and foremost, remain calm so when you call the police and your insurer they can better advise you. Document & Report Take plenty of photos of the damages and make a list of any items stolen right away. It is important that you figure out what was taken from your car as soon as possible so you can notify the police and determine which items need to be replaced. In addition to money and electronics, it is common for license plates, license plate tabs or auto parts such as tires, rims, or catalytic converters to be stolen as well. Be sure to keep an eye out for those missing items. Report stolen license plates immediately so you will not be on the hook for speeding tickets or toll rides taken by the perpetrators. Serial numbers on your electronics or features such as Apple’s “Find My iPhone” tracking tool can actually be very useful for law enforcement. If you store any credit or debit cards or financial documents in your car, you will want to notify your bank to request new cards as soon as possible and be on the lookout for potential identity theft. If you choose to file an auto insurance claim, be sure not to move the vehicle until after a police officer has come and made their report. Be prepared by having these handy to file a police report: Your driver’s license Vehicle registration Car insurance ID card Photos of the damage List of stolen items Preventing Additional Break-Ins A car with one or more broken windows is an easier target for auto theft, so try to avoid parking your vehicle on the street. Consider parking it in a secure garage or another secure location until your car doors and windows are fixed and in safe working order. Parking indoors will also protect your car’s interior, as will…
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What Causes Teen Car Crashes?

The traffic accident rates for 16-to-19-year-old drivers exceeds any other age group. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, teen drivers are nearly three times more likely than drivers aged 20 and older to be in a fatal crash.  Driving is a privilege, not a right. It’s important that teens own the newfound responsibilities that come with driving. There are specific causes that make teenagers such risky drivers, and understanding these causes is the key to helping your teen to stay safe on the roads and prevent themselves from becoming part of the above statistic. Poor Hazard Detection The ability to detect hazards in the driving environment is based on perceptual information-gathering skills and identification of potential threats. It takes time for young individuals to acquire this ability, which is why teens are more likely than older drivers to speed and allow shorter distances from the front of their vehicle to the front of the next. Low Risk Perception Risk perception is the ability to subjectively assess the degree of threat posed by a hazard and one’s ability to handle the situation. Young drivers tend to underestimate the crash risk in hazardous situations and overestimate their ability to avoid the threats they identify. Risk Taking Teenagers tend to take more risks while driving partly due to overconfidence in their driving abilities. Teenagers are more likely to engage in risky behaviors such as speeding, tailgating, running red lights, violating traffic signs/signals, making illegal turns, passing dangerously, and failure to yield to pedestrians. Teenagers also tend to wear safety belts less often than older drivers. Lack of Skill New drivers have yet to fully master basic vehicle handling skills and safe-driving knowledge they need to drive safely. Vehicles are intricate machines and it takes time to properly maneuver any potentially dangerous machinery. Alcohol and Drugs Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs is a common cause of serious crashes, especially fatal ones, involving teenage drivers. Teenagers who drink and drive are at much greater risk of serious crashes than older drivers with equal blood alcohol concentrations. Passengers For teenagers, the risk of being in a crash dramatically increases when they transport passengers and the risk of a fatal crash increases as the number of passengers increases. Passengers who are same age peers may distract teen drivers and promote risky behavior….
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The Three Main Types of Auto Insurance Coverage, and Why They’re All Important

When you’re paying your bills every month, you may pay for auto insurance without giving a lot of thought into what it actually does for you. The reality is that auto insurance isn’t one single thing; there are three main types of coverage (and some other optional coverages too). All three of these are important and they work together to make sure you’re protected. Let’s discuss the three main types and what they offer you. Liability Liability insurance, which is further divided into property damage liability and bodily injury liability is the coverage that pays for another driver’s expenses in case of an at-fault accident. If, for example, you hit another vehicle and were found at fault, your liability insurance would kick in and pay for the car repairs and any medical expenses that were accrued. Liability insurance is required by law in order to drive your vehicle. Collision Collision insurance is the coverage that pays for your own expenses if you are involved in an at-fault accident. In the example above, if you had collision insurance your insurance would pay for the repairs or replacement of your vehicle. If the accident was not your fault, and instead was the fault of the other driver, his or her insurance should be the one that will pay for your damages. In the unusual case where the other driver isn’t covered, your “uninsured motorist” policy would come into effect, if you had chosen to purchase it. Comprehensive Comprehensive insurance is the type of coverage that pays you for anything that is NOT a standard car accident. Comprehensive covers you in case of theft, vandalism, fire, acts of war and other incidents. In most of these cases, there may not be someone that could directly take the “blame” for the damage. However, with comprehensive coverage, you will not have to worry because your vehicle will be covered for repair or replacement. These policies can be quite different from one another. Your comprehensive policy will detail exactly what would be included. While you may not look forward to paying for car insurance, the peace of mind and protection it provides you is something you can’t live without. If you’d like more information about affordable and effective coverage, check AJ Benet’s auto insurance options, including our Youthful Driver auto insurance policies. We look forward to protecting you and…
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The Auto Insurance Claims Process, Step by Step

An auto insurance claim is a request made to an insurance company for compensation for damages sustained after a car accident, or for representation or intervention on the insured’s behalf when they are liable for damages. If you are involved in an accident, you will want to make a claim. When it comes time to file an auto insurance claim, a lot of people aren’t always in the best head space. Car accidents are incredibly nerve-wracking, and trying to coordinate all of the necessary information and figure out what costs you are responsible for can be stressful on anyone. Rather than waiting until the accident has already happened to try to figure everything out, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with our guide to the claims process now. That way, if an accident ever does happen (though it hopefully won’t), you’ll be ready to go and make the process as short and painless as possible. 1. Contact the Police After a car accident, contact the police and have an officer take down the details of the accident in the police report. You may be shaken up after an accident and not be in a position to assess what’s happened. If the other party becomes difficult, the police will be there to make sure you’re safe and that emergency service personnel are there to assist with injuries or hazards. 2. Contact Your Insurance Agent Having your car accident information ready will help you keep track of the information needed to file your claim. Be prepared to provide accident details to your insurer. Call your insurance company from the scene of the accident while waiting for the police or after you are safe. They will walk you through the next steps. If your car is not drivable, your insurer can advise you on transportation for you and your car. If you have this coverage on your policy, they can arrange for your car to be towed, and get you a rental car. If you do not call them, you won’t know how they can help and you may spend more money than needed. They will then open the claims file. A claims professional will represent you in any discussions with third parties involved, investigate the circumstances, handle vehicle repairs and rental arrangements, and get the claim settled. That’s what your insurance company…
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Who Really Causes the Most Car Accidents? Common Stereotypes Explored

There are many stereotypes around the question “Who causes the most car accidents?” Some people claim that women are statistically worse drivers than men, while others claim that men cause more accidents. Some say that newly-licensed teenagers are the biggest dangers of the road, while still others feel that senior citizens above a certain age should not be driving. The truth is, we can all be accident-prone and are constantly at risk out there on the road. No matter who you are, it’s always crucial for your safety and your finances to be careful on the road and secure Auto Insurance before driving. Let’s explore a couple common stereotypes that have been in the talk for quite some time now. Men vs. Women The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety did a study for findings based on the idea that men tend to engage in certain riskier behaviors on the road than women. Men’s statistical bad driving tends to stem from deciding to err on the opposite side of caution. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted an analysis showing that nearly twice as many men 34 years or younger die in speeding crashes than women in the same age bracket. It was also found that more men drink and drive, get traffic violations and are deemed responsible for a greater portion of car accidents. That being said, according to the National Highway Safety Administration, men also drive a lot more miles than women which could be why men cause 6.1 million accidents per year, while women cause 4.4 million per year. On average, men drive 16,550 miles and women drive 10,142 miles per year according to Federal Highway Administration. Therefore men drive about 30 percent more miles than women. Yet, they’re implicated in slightly less than 30 percent of car accidents. Men do cause more accidents, but they are slightly less at-risk than women, by a small margin. The conclusion? We can all be risky drivers at times, and no one should consider themselves one hundred percent safe from car accidents. Seniors vs. Teens Mistakes are expected from young drivers, but the first few years are pretty risky. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety drivers, ages 16-19 are three times more likely to crash than drivers over 20. The United States Census Bureau found that teens cause about…
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Do You Have a Teen Driver? Here’s How You And Your Family Can Prepare

Obtaining a driver’s license and getting behind the wheel of the family car or their own is exciting for your teenager, while you may have many concerns and anxiety about road safety and auto insurance. Speak to an agent to help guide you through this life milestone, so you understand how to insure young drivers on their auto policies. Driving is a privilege, not a right. Certain steps must be agreed upon and fulfilled to gain and maintain that privilege. It is so important that new drivers grasp that concept and understand just how much maturity is needed to stay safe out there on the roads. Teens must realize and accept the newfound responsibilities that come with driving, and there are things that you can do to make this transition a smooth one. Stress the Importance of Practice Driving is not a skill that can be mastered quickly. Take an active role in teaching your child how to drive and give them as much behind-the-wheel time as possible.  Your teen’s driving school should provide experience with various types of road and traffic conditions and you should reinforce what they’ve learned outside of class as well. Having your teen practice in a car that is in good condition and good working order is important.  Make sure they know how to operate mirrors, knobs, seats, safety systems and other key features. Remember that everything should be adjusted before they put the vehicle in gear. Ban Electronic Devices Emphasize that your teen must never use their phone or any other type of electronic communication device while driving. Calls and text messages can wait until they’ve arrived to their destinations. Do you want their cell phone turned off while their driving?  Can they use Spotify in the car? Be sure to be very clear what rules they are expected to abide by. Reminder: do not call or text your child when you know they are driving. If you set a good example for them, they are more likely to follow along. Teach Responsibility and Maturity   Most teens are focused on the driver’s license itself and have no idea about what else goes into maintaining a vehicle. They should have a basic understanding of the maintenance involved with the vehicle; this includes things such as oil changes, tire rotations, new tires and proper fluid…
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Driving Safely on Thanksgiving

The holiday season is quickly approaching. Malls are filled with garlands and sky-high Christmas trees and everyone is the Christmas spirit. However, there is the case of the crowded roads and the higher chance of accidents during this time of year. It’s important that you stay protected with New York Automobile Insurance. In an article in West Bend, they explain a few tips for staying safe on the roads during Thanksgiving and the rest of the holidays. Try to take off work early. Typically, Wednesday’s and Sunday’s are the busiest days to travel during Thanksgiving. If you have extra vacation days, try to use them to start your holiday travels early. Avoid traffic by leaving Monday or Tuesday and coming back Saturday. If you’re in the situation where you have to travel during peak times, then consider taking other routes to your destination. Try to avoid traffic by picking the scenic route. Make sure to have your phone fully charged before charging. If not, bring your charging cables with you. All of us use maps on our phones, so it’s essential that your smartphones are charged. If you’re delayed because of traffic, make sure to have distractions ready for you. Pack snacks and water and it’s a known fact that a full stomach equals happy people! When you know you’re taking a long road trip, get plenty of rest before. Take breaks while traveling because it helps you stay awake. At AJ Benet, we make sure that your New York Automobile Insurance includes more than the simple general liability and product liability. Our policies extend in cases where you underlying limits are exhausted. Our team of experts is willing to go the extra mile and not only protect your business but understand it. For more information, call us today at 888.639.4560.

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Going Beyond Your Automobile Policy

Protecting your vehicle with a New York Auto Insurance Policy is a top priority. However, what if you find yourself in a situation where your auto coverage is not enough? What happens if the limit fails to fully cover the other driver’s needs? The purpose of your umbrella policy is to protect your assets from an unforeseen event. In the event of a lawsuit, your umbrella coverage will pay for the damages you’re responsible for up to the policy limit. For example, if you’re at fault in a car accident, your automobile insurance will cover the other driver up to the limit you selected. According to an article in Nerdwallet, you might need umbrella liability insurance if you own property or have a lot of money in the bank. The best way to decide if you need umbrella insurance is by determining your net worth. If your net worth exceeds the amount of liability insurance you can purchase for your home or  vehicle, then consider the umbrella policy. For example, most insurers won’t sell you umbrella policy unless you have $250,000 worth of liability coverage on your car and $300,000 on your home. At AJ Benet, we make sure that your Umbrella Liability insurance includes more than the simple general liability, auto liability, and product liability. Our policies extend in cases where you underlying limits are exhausted. This provides protection from personal injury, liquor law, contractual and vehicle. Umbrella insurance policies also provide coverage for risks that might not be included in your primary commercial liability insurance policies. For more information, call us today at 888.639.4560.

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Avoid These Three Common Car Crash Causes

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are three common causes of car crashes in the United States.  What is important to note is that each of these factors are completely under the driver’s control. While you can’t eliminate every risk when you’re on the road, insuring your vehicle with a New York & New Jersey Auto Insurance Policy and being mindful of these common causes will safeguard you from liability. Pay Attention According to the NHTSA, about 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or other handheld electronic devices while driving. Add to this fact the countless other distractions you may face while driving, such as playing your car stereo or talking to a passenger. While you can’t control other drivers on the road, it is important to remember that you can control yourself.  Pay attention to what you are doing so that you’ll be ready to react quickly in the event of a threat. Stay Sober Don’t drive after you’ve been drinking or using other drugs, including prescription drugs. In 2012, according to the National Safety Council (NSC), 15,000 people were killed in accidents involving impaired drivers. If you are unsure how a new medication will affect you, don’t drive until you know. Don’t Speed A driver could be tempted to think that the majority of crashes happen on the interstate. However, according to the NHTSA, this is not the case. The highest number of speed-related accidents occurs on roads with a speed limit lower than 55mph. Always drive at a safe speed, while keeping in mind the drivers around you. If someone behind you is trying to speed up, do not try blocking them. Move and let them go passed you, otherwise you could increase your risk of a crash. At A.J. Benet Inc., we know how important it is to keep you safe. You and your vehicles deserve quality coverage from a responsive, community-based agency that always goes beyond just the policy. Call us today at 888.639.4560 for information on our New York Business Insurance Policies.

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