You may have heard of or even used “full coverage” when referring to an auto insurance policy. Unfortunately, there’s no universally defined term for full coverage car insurance. Providers often have different meanings, and in fact, the term isn’t even legally defined. Contrary to popular belief, full coverage doesn’t guarantee absolute or sometimes adequate protection after an incident.

Driving on the road can be dangerous, and accidents occur daily. One of the most significant issues that arise after an accident is clients realizing they lack sufficient insurance coverage. Unfortunately, many people face this situation when involved in an accident. Therefore, understanding full coverage auto insurance and its offerings is critical.


What does full coverage auto insurance include?


Generally, “full coverage” auto insurance typically includes liability insurance and physical damage coverage, which covers collision and comprehensive incidents. However, it is crucial to understand that “full coverage” does not ensure complete protection against all possible damages resulting from an accident. You must consider all potential limitations, exclusions, and deductibles. Additionally, you can add UM/UIM (uninsured/underinsured motorist) coverage for extra protection. To ensure you have the right coverage for your specific needs, carefully review your policy details and consult your insurance agent. By clearly understanding full coverage car insurance, you can confidently make informed decisions and drive with peace of mind.


Liability Insurance


Liability coverage is the most basic form of full coverage car insurance. It only covers the damages caused by the accidents for which you are liable. In Ohio, the mandatory liability coverage levels are “25/50/25,” which cover $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 for property damage. While this may seem enough, it is often inadequate for significant accidents.


Physical Damage Coverage


Physical damage coverage covers damages to your vehicle. It includes two components: collision coverage, which covers vehicle damages caused by an accident, and comprehensive coverage, which covers damages unrelated to an accident, like theft or natural disasters.


 Collision Coverage


Collision coverage is another component of full coverage car insurance that covers repairs to your vehicle if you’re involved in an accident with another vehicle or an object. It covers the damage caused regardless of who is liable for the accident. It’s an optional coverage type in Ohio, and you can adjust the coverage levels at your discretion.

Comprehensive Coverage


Comprehensive coverage is a type of insurance that provides full coverage for your vehicle, including non-collision damages caused by fires, thefts, and natural disasters. This coverage combines liability and collision coverage, offering superior protection for your vehicle and its contents. While it may come at a higher cost, it ensures peace of mind while driving. For instance, comprehensive coverage can be extremely beneficial when hitting a deer causes property damage in Ohio. Unexpectedly, encountering a 150-pound animal can be terrifying and result in vehicle damage. That’s when comprehensive coverage comes in handy, ensuring you have the necessary coverage for your property damage. However, comprehensive coverage is not helpful if the impact of a deer causes you or a passenger physical injury.

Understanding the Limits, Exclusions, and Deductibles of Your Full Coverage Insurance Policy


It’s worth noting that full coverage doesn’t always mean you’re 100% protected from all damages. Your policy will likely have certain limits, exclusions, and deductibles you must know.




When it comes to insurance policies, one thing we all need to pay close attention to is our policy limits. These limits are crucial because they determine the maximum coverage for certain damages. Let’s say you’ve been in an accident and have collision coverage in your policy with a limit of $10,000. That means if the damages to your car exceed that amount, you’ll have to foot the rest of the bill out of your pocket.




Exclusions refer to the damages that your policy doesn’t cover. They exist to protect both you and the insurance company. Think of it this way: you pay your premiums in exchange for the coverage stated in your policy. If something is specifically excluded from coverage, it’s essential to know what that is. For example, if you were to drive under the influence of alcohol and your car was damaged, your insurance company might exclude that damage from coverage.




A deductible is the amount you’re responsible for paying before your insurer covers any expenses. This can vary depending on your policy and specific terms, but it’s common for policies to have separate deductibles for different types of coverage. In particular, collision and comprehensive coverage often have their separate deductibles. Understanding how deductibles work can help you make informed coverage and financial planning decisions.


UM/UIM Coverage


When shopping for auto insurance, you must consider UM/UIM coverage. UM/UIM, which stands for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, protects you in case of an accident with a driver who is underinsured or has no insurance. In Ohio, UM/UIM coverage is optional but highly recommended. Since one in eight drivers in the US is uninsured, having UM/UIM coverage can be a lifesaver if you get hit by one of them.


Full Coverage Auto Insurance and Personal Injury Protection (PIP)


Full coverage auto insurance usually includes specific coverage for personal injury. Personal injury protection (PIP) is a form of no-fault insurance that covers medical bills and lost wages in case of an accident, regardless of fault. PIP coverage is the law in the State of Michigan. PIP can also cover rehabilitation and funeral expenses. In Ohio, PIP is not mandatory, but you can purchase it as an add-on to your policy.


Medical Payments Coverage


Medical payments coverage, or MedPay, is an additional type of coverage option for auto insurance policies in Ohio. In a car accident, this coverage can help pay for medical expenses for you or your passengers, even if you’re at fault. Med Payments coverage is still available to you and your passengers if you strike a deer or are involved with another driver having a sudden medical emergency, such as a heart attack or stroke.


Supplemental Health Insurance


Supplemental Health Insurance is additional insurance you can purchase to help accident victims and their families deal with additional medical costs and the extra costs associated with hospital stays. Further, the coverage provides cash payments for benefits such as extended care, emergency accidents, outpatient surgery, observation coverage, and ambulance service.


Potential Risks of Minimum Coverage


Some drivers choose to have only the bare minimum coverage required by the law, but this approach carries risks. In the event of an accident, these minimal policies often do not provide enough coverage to pay for all damages. If a driver causes an accident resulting in injuries or property damage that surpasses the policy limit, they may be held accountable for the remaining costs. In such situations, additional coverages like underinsured or uninsured motorist protection can safeguard you from financial damages caused by drivers who lack sufficient coverage.


Financial Consequences of Insufficient Coverage


Having the right coverages in place is crucial in the event of an accident. Without them, you may face significant financial consequences. For instance, if you cause an accident but only have liability coverage, you would be responsible for paying for your vehicle repairs, medical expenses, legal fees, and any other damages incurred by other drivers or passengers involved in the accident. Further, the court can also request that the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles suspend a driver who chooses to drive without an active insurance policy.


Umbrella Policies for Extra Protection


Ohio operates under a “tort” system, holding the person responsible for an accident liable for the resulting damages. In cases where damages surpass policy limits, an “umbrella policy” can be requested to secure additional insurance coverage. This added protection proves valuable when the other party’s damages exceed the maximum coverage provided by your policy by increasing the amount of UM/UIM coverage available. However, your agent must examine your policy closely to ensure additional benefits of the coverage.


Seek Legal Advice After an Accident


Understanding your auto insurance coverage is crucial for any driver to be prepared for any circumstance. It’s easy to assume you have sufficient protection until an accident happens and unexpected expenses arise. That’s why it’s essential to review your policy and ensure you have full coverage for peace of mind on the road. However, accidents occur, and if you ever get involved in one, seeking legal advice from one of our Ohio personal injury car accident attorneys can make a significant difference. The attorneys at Gallon, Takacs & Boissoneault possess the expertise to guide you through the legal system and help you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at 419-843-6663 or use our online contact form, and let us help you have peace of mind while on the road.

With a local personal injury attorney near you, help is just a phone call away.


Related Articles:

Ohio Department of Insurance  – Automobile Insurance Guide