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Each year, more automobiles and drivers hit the highways. With so many vehicles on the road, crashes will happen. The difference between a small aggravation and major pain can be car insurance. But why do you need insurance and just how much should you buy? Required coverage varies by state/province but usually includes the following: It pays for damages due to bodily injury and property damage to others for which you are responsible. Bodily injury damages include medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering. Property damage includes damaged property and loss of use of property. It also covers your defense and court costs if you are sued. Higher recommended insurances are available that cover more than the lower, state-mandated insurance. Personal injury protection: This is required in some states and is optional in others. It pays you or your passengers for medical treatment resulting from a crash, regardless of who may have been at fault, and is often called no-fault coverage. It may also pay for lost earnings, replacement of services and funeral expenses. The minimum amount of this insurance is typically set by the state. Medical payments: This coverage is available in non-no-fault states; it pays despite who may have been at fault. It pays for an insured person's reasonable and necessary medical and funeral expenses for bodily injury from a crash. Collision: This pays for damage to your car caused by an accident. Comprehensive: This applies if your car is stolen or damaged by causes other than collision, including fire, wind, hail, flood or vandalism. Uninsured motorist: This pays for damages when an insured person is injured in a crash caused by another person who does not have liability insurance or by a person who cannot be identified (usually a hit-and-run driver). Under-insured motorist: This pays for damages when an insured person is injured in a crash caused by another person who does not have enough liability insurance to cover the full amount of the damages. Other coverage, such as emergency road service and car rental, is also available.Your auto insurance payments vary by company and will depend on several factors, including: *Your selected coverage *Your vehicle's make and model * Your driving record * Your age, gender and marital status and * Where you live Some have come to think of auto insurance as a necessary evil, but it can truly rescue your economic health Evaluate your needs, do your research and with the help of your insurance agent choose the option that best suits you.