Does insurance cover a stolen car? If this question has been on your mind, keep on reading to find out all you need to know about stolen vehicles and auto insurance.
There are different types of auto insurance coverages, and the only one that covers vehicle theft is comprehensive insurance. Below you’ll find out what precisely this insurance type includes and how much you will get if your car is stolen.
Have you ever thought about what you should do if you become a victim of car theft? Probably not; that’s why I also listed the steps you need to follow in case of an unpleasant event of this kind.
But first, let’s get the basics out of the way and see what ACV means, as it is a word you’ll commonly see mentioned when you read about car insurance and theft.
What Is ACV?
ACV or actual cash value is a term you’ll often see when trying to learn whether auto insurance can provide full coverage for a stolen car.
If your vehicle is ever stolen and you have comprehensive coverage, your insurer will pay you the actual cash value. ACV refers to the market value of the car, excluding the deductible. Insurance companies consider factors such as age, model, condition, mileage, accident history, and more.
They will do extensive research to find a value that depicts the vehicle’s actual worth before it was stolen. ACV does not include any added technology that you purchased yourself and improvements you added.
Personal belongings in the car are not covered by comprehensive insurance and are not part of the actual cash value. However, if you do pay for renters or homeowners insurance, you might be eligible to file a claim for your personal belongings, depending on your policy.
My car was stolen, will insurance pay if it was a vehicle on lease or loan? Lease and loan are two other things car owners need to keep in mind. The amount from the ACV you’ll get might not be enough so you can finish paying off the loan or lease.
That’s why insurance companies offer you to purchase gap coverage, an extension that will cover a part of the missing portion you owe.
What Is Comprehensive Car Insurance?
There are three main types of coverage when it comes to auto insurance. All three offer different levels of protection.
- Liability: When you choose this coverage, it will take care of the damage you’ll possibly cause to other people’s property, cars, or their medical expenses.
- Collision: When you choose this coverage, it will take care of damage caused to your car in a collision with other vehicles or damage caused by a collision with objects.
- Comprehensive: When you choose this coverage, it will take care of almost everything, excluding collisions.
Comprehensive is the only auto insurance that covers car theft. It also takes care of damages caused to your vehicle due to water, vandalism, fallen objects, damaged car parts during a theft, stolen parts, and more. As I said earlier, this coverage does not include collisions.
Comprehensive insurance is not something you have to purchase; however, if you want to lease a car or get a loan for a vehicle, the lender might require you to get this type of coverage.
Now, let’s get back to the most crucial question: how much does insurance cover for a stolen car? If you choose the first two types of coverage, you will not get anything for a stolen car. Anyhow, if you opt for comprehensive coverage, the insurer will pay you the actual cash value of the vehicle minus the deductible.
What To Do If Your Car Was Stolen
Finding out your car is gone is such a stressful event. This is a time when you need to stay collected and follow these simple steps:
Call The Police
The first thing to do if your car is stolen is to call the police. You should act fast because the chances of finding the vehicle are the highest during the first 24 hours.
Once the police are notified, you should file a police report. Most insurance companies require you to first file a report with the police before they can take any action.
The police will require information about the vehicle, including the model, year, license plate, identification number, any recognizable features, and everything you can tell them about the theft.
File A Claim
Next, you should file a claim with your car insurance company. You can either contact the insurer via phone or file a claim online.
The insurance agent will also need all the information you can give them so they can evaluate the claim correctly. Be prepared to answer their questions because it will be a long conversation.
Don’t be surprised when they ask about the people who had access to the car, where you keep the car keys, all the items you had in the vehicle, the number of the policy, condition of the car, and more.
If your car is leased or financed, you need to notify the lender right away. The leasing company will get in touch with your insurer.
What Happens With Recovered Vehicles
You’ll be surprised to hear that almost half of the stolen vehicles in the U.S. are found. If your car happens to be located, the insurance company will take a close look at its condition, evaluate it according to state-appointed rules, and decide whether they’ll fix it or it’s not worth fixing.
If the recovered car does not have any damage or the damage is not extensive and can be repaired, the insurance company will cover it.
When the insurance company covers your claim before the vehicle is recovered, they will take over the car.
Does Insurance Cover A Stolen Car If I Left The Keys Inside?
It all depends on the coverage of your car insurance policy. If you opt for comprehensive coverage, the insurance company will cover the stolen car even if you left the keys inside. This is the only type of insurance that includes theft, while the other more basic policies do not cover theft, no matter if you did or didn’t leave the keys in the car.
Don’t forget that the policy you chose has a deductible. If you haven’t paid the deductible at the moment of the theft, you will have to pay it before the company pays out your claim.
Does Insurance Cover Stolen Car Parts?
Comprehensive car insurance covers the costs for stolen car parts, as well as the damage that can happen to your car during the theft. If you have any other policy, you won’t be able to file a claim for stolen car parts.
When there are custom objects in the car you want to protect, such as technology, you will have to add coverage for custom parts and pay extra.
If a car gets stolen, does insurance cover the theft? The most crucial factor that determines this is the type of coverage on your auto insurance. Comprehensive insurance is the only type that will cover a stolen car.
At the same time, this insurance will take care of damage to your car caused by floods, vandalism, and fallen objects, with the exclusion of collision.
What’s even better, the comprehension policy includes stolen car parts, damaged parts, broken windows, mirrors, and car theft when you left your keys inside. As you can see, this is quite an extensive coverage that is not mandatory; however, it’s beneficial.
- Actual cash value or ACV is the market value of the car that the insurer will pay you in case it gets stolen if you have comprehensive insurance.
- Comprehensive insurance is the only type of auto insurance that will cover a stolen car, damage caused by objects, water, excluding collision.
- Comprehensive insurance includes stolen or damaged car parts and a stolen car even if you left the keys in.
- If your car is stolen, call the police, file a report with them, then contact your insurance company.
Do you have comprehensive insurance in case your car gets stolen, or do you have another kind of policy? Share with us in the comments section below.