The United Arab Emirates requires car owners to secure insurance for their vehicles. Although comprehensive car insurance is not mandatory, your vehicle should have some cover.
If you are in the market for a car insurance policy, here a few essential points to reflect on before making a final decision.
Types of car insurance available
There are two main types of car insurance available for vehicle owners in the UAE: comprehensive and third-party liability insurance. Here’s a brief look at each of your options.
● Comprehensive car insurance
As the name implies, a comprehensive car insurance policy will cover the vehicle, the passengers, and the driver in the event that you get involved in a road incident. Such incidences include fire, explosions, vandalism, and theft.
Compared to third-party insurance, comprehensive car insurance is costlier.
● Third-party insurance
The main advantage of this type of car insurance over comprehensive coverage is that it is the cheaper option.
However, it can only cover the other car and its passengers. This type of policy will not cover you, your passengers, and your vehicle.
The UAE’s new car insurance rules
Numerous factors affect the total price of a car insurance policy. In the UAE, one key factor that has led to an increase in the amount of car insurance policies would be the legislative changes that took effect in 2017.
Here’s a brief overview of those critical changes:
● Free car replacement
Prior to these changes, you can get a replacement car if this was included in the terms of your policy, whether you caused the accident or not.
Under the new rules, you can only get a free car replacement if you are not at fault. The insurance provider of the third party shoulders the costs involved.
● Liability coverage for immediate family
Under the new rules, close family members like parents, children, and spouses are covered by the insurance if they are involved in a road accident. In the past, your relatives may not be covered unless you took an add-on to include them.
● Declaration of total loss
Another significant change the legislation has brought about is the clarity on reporting on what counts as a total loss.
Now, if a significant car component is severely damaged (say, for example, the chassis) and it cannot be replaced, the insurance company should declare the vehicle as a total loss. And instead of attempting to repair the car, you can either get paid the current market value of the car or get a new car entirely.
● Maximum value of premiums are now specified
The new rules now mandate that the maximum value of premiums should be clearly stated. Apart from that, the new rules establish a base or minimum rate for each type of car.
Tips for choosing a car insurance policy
Ready to shop for a car insurance policy? Here are a few helpful tips that can make the experience easier for you.
● Don’t choose based on price alone
While it may be tempting to choose a policy based on the cheapest car insurance quote that you get, you can end up paying more over the long term. Beyond price, examine what each policy covers.
● Be truthful
When you are ready to secure a policy, you will be asked a series of questions based on numerous factors, including your accident history.
Be truthful and do not lie. Insurance companies perform stringent background checks. If your chosen company discovers that you have told a lie, the price of your policy may be changed, or your claim may be refused outright.
● Choose a policy that works best for you
Each type of insurance policy has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. You might have set your sights on either a comprehensive or third party car insurance, but before you make a final decision, consider the other option first.
● Read the fine print
Before signing on the dotted line, you should fully understand the terms of the contract that you are signing. Do not hesitate to ask for clarification if anything seems amiss or unclear.
● Cover as many bases as possible
Consider getting add-ons for your policy, depending on your current and foreseen needs. These include towing services and agency repairs.
Avoid over- or under-insuring your vehicle as this can adversely affect your claims.
Once you have secured a policy for your vehicle, make sure that you keep the pertinent documents as well as the number of your company. These will come in handy should you figure in an accident.
Do remember to renew your policy regularly.
Due diligence pays off
Choosing which policy to get requires time and effort. However, if you choose a policy that’s right for you, and a situation wherein you would need to use it arises, you’ll thank yourself for spending the time to find the best coverage for you, your family, and your car.
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