Must Know Garage Liability Insurance Information

Are you familiar with garage liability insurance? Depending on the type of business that you’re involved with, than you already may have come across it before. If not, then you may be surprised to learn that there’s more to it than meets the eye. In this guide, we’ll take a look at this form of commercial insurance, who needs it, and how and why it’s a necessity.

One of the first points to consider is that this is a more widespread or common form of insurance than you may imagine. There are many different types of businesses and industries where this is either required or recommended.

This begins with automobile dealerships. Auto dealers are required to carry numerous forms of commercial insurance, such as dealer bonds, as well as garage liability. With the latter, business owners are essentially covered in the combined areas of general liability and automotive insurance. In other words, they’re protected against bodily injury and property damage as a result of a vehicle accident.

Beyond the world of automobile dealerships, as we mentioned, there are also many other businesses which are served by garage liability coverage. This list includes essentially any type of business where a customer’s or client’s car may be left on-site, and either moved or serviced by the business. In practice, this list includes everything from valet services and parking garages to quick lube and tire change facilities, auto repair and body shops, car washes, and so forth.

What this does not cover is what’s separately known as “garagekeepers” insurance. This portion of the puzzle is what protects your business against any actual damage to the vehicle itself. You don’t want to fall into the trap of believing that you are already protected against this only to find out at the worst time that you’re actually not covered. It’s any business owner’s nightmare.

Another important note to remember is that the specific requirements for garage liability will vary from state to state. In a state such as Florida, different automobile dealer licenses have different minimum coverage levels, for instance. In depends on the type of license you’re carrying, and this type of stipulation is common in other states across the country as well.

Of course, it’s always essential to work with an experienced, licensed insurance professional in your state or local area. He or she will be familiar with the local regulations and requirements, and should be able to help you smoothly navigate the matter while finding the right deal and the right policy.

It’s Spring, There Is a Hail Storm – Hail Damage Repair Information

Luckily for car owners without garages, most hail storms do not cause body damage to cars until the hail is larger than ½ inch in diameter. Even then, it takes bigger hail than that to cause significant damage. The first thing that happens after a hail storm is car dealers offer Hail Sales and hail repair outfits pop up like mushrooms after a rain.

  1. Hail Sales offer damaged cars at prices well below book value. However, the real result is that car dealers simply make bigger commissions and sell more cars. Any car sold with unrepaired damage means that the damage was either too severe or too expensive to be worth fixing. Every car that a dealer can fix before sale with Paintless Dent Repair (PDR) will have been fixed already.
  2. Repainting a car after PDR or other hail damage removal adds extra costs. PDR works well for small dents where the dent has no cracked paint within the dent.
  3. Dents to large for PDR to repair must be handled at a conventional auto shop and the repairs will need to be painted and finished.
  4. Large or deep dents or those where the metal is very stretched or even cracked require a body shop repair job. Deep dents that break the paint will result in rust to the metal body of the car if left unrepaired.
  5. Some insurance companies pay car owners the amount on its estimate, regardless of whether the owner gets the repairs done or not. Keeping the insurance money without fixing it is legal but choosing to leave damage unrepaired can impact your ability to get full-coverage insurance on the car. It can also affect the amount you get for future repairs or similar damage since future occurrences will be excluded from the coverage.
  6. Having a car’s hail damage repaired using insurance money does result in the repair being listed on the CarFax vehicle report from that point onward. This helps insurance companies avoid bogus damage claims and also is used by car buyers to know the damage and repair history of their potential vehicle.
  7. Owners who choose to leave it unrepaired may find the cost of the hail damage deducted from damage claims later in the life of the car. Document any repairs to hail damage to ensure future claims are paid in full.
  8. If you own your car outright, you need to decide how long you plan to own the car and how important the repair is to you. If you have a car that has little value and plan to drive it until it dies, there is not much point in repairing hail damage.
  9. If you have an active loan on your car, your lien holder will probably require verification that the damage was fixed. In some cases, they might allow you to apply the hail damage repair check to the balance of your car loan.
  10. Get damage estimates and compare that with the claim payout offer minus your deductible before making a decision about filing an insurance claim.
  11. The insurance company may “total out” an older car with only relatively minor hail damage simply because the vehicle has less useful life remaining. Motorcycles can handle very little hail damage before insurance companies consider them a total loss.

When checking for hail damage or getting an insurance estimate, make sure to check windshields for cracks and chips. If glass is involved, get that repaired and make sure the permanent seals along windshield and rear window edges are properly repaired and set, too.