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Comprehensive and collision coverage are the two types of car insurance coverage for physical damage to your vehicle. These two coverages protect your car, while liability coverage – mandatory in most states – protects you when you cause bodily injury or property damage to others.

Liability, collision, and comprehensive work together to protect you in the event of an accident. Comprehensive and collision are separate, optional coverages that allow you to make claims for damage or total loss of your vehicle, regardless of fault.

Key Takeaways

  • Collision and comprehensive are optional physical damage coverage that cover your vehicle if it’s damaged in an accident or in certain events, such as theft or striking an animal.
  • Comp and collision insurance don’t cover damage due to wear and tear, criminal action or mechanical failure.
  • Collision insurance provides coverage for scenarios such as your vehicle hitting another or hitting a stationary object such as a tree.
  • Comprehensive insurance offers protection against vandalism, fire or theft and natural disasters, such as flooding and windstorms.

What is comprehensive car insurance?

Comprehensive insurance is a type of auto insurance coverage designed to help protect you and your vehicle against damage caused by an accident, vandalism, theft or any environmental hazards, such as hail, flood, etc. 

What does comprehensive insurance cover?

Comprehensive insurance generally covers your vehicle in these scenarios:

  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Glass damage
  • Damage from flying missiles (defined as any flying or propelled object, like an item falling off a vehicle) or falling objects (trees, boulders, etc.)
  • Striking an animal
  • Fire
  • Floodwaters
  • Damage due to natural events or severe weather (e.g. hail, wind, tornado, or hurricane)

If your vehicle is damaged due to one of these perils, after paying your deductible, your comprehensive coverage pays for the repairs or total loss up to the actual cash value of your car.

What is collision car insurance?

Collision insurance is a type of coverage offered to drivers that helps protect their vehicles from damage resulting from a collision with another vehicle or an object.

What does collision insurance cover?

Collision insurance covers your vehicle in these scenarios:

  • Your car hits another vehicle
  • Your car is hit by another vehicle
  • When you hit a stationary object (e.g. tree, fence, house)
  • Unintentional flipping, rolling or overturning of your vehicle

Collision covers your car from accident damages, regardless of fault. To make a claim, you will need to pay your deductible, and then your coverage will pay the remaining cost of repairs or the total loss of your vehicle.

What comprehensive and collision insurance doesn’t cover

Comprehensive and collision insurance won’t cover the following situations:

  • Wear and tear
  • Mechanical failure (not related to an accident)
  • Electrical failure
  • Custom equipment that wasn’t listed and specifically covered on the policy or custom-equipment endorsement
  • Additional damage caused by failing to take preventative measures
  • Intentional actions
  • Criminal actions (damages during your attempt to evade police)
  • Confiscation or destruction of your vehicle by law enforcement
  • Nuclear exposure or explosion
  • Bio-chemical attack
  • War
  • Personal items damaged in or stolen out of your vehicle
  • Damaged or stolen electronic equipment that wasn’t originally installed in your vehicle (Many aftermarket electronics require an additional endorsement.)

Having both comprehensive and collision on your vehicle protects you against many situations, but not everything. 

What is the minimum deductible for collision and comprehensive insurance? 

Deductibles typically run from $250 to $1,000, though some insurers allow higher – up to $2,500. If your car is leased or financed, normally your contract will require your deductible to be set at a certain amount, typically $500 or lower.

A deductible is an amount you pay out-of-pocket before your car insurance coverage goes into effect to pay the remaining costs of repairs or actual cash value for a totaled vehicle. Deductibles are per incident, so you’ll owe a deductible each time you make a collision or comprehensive claim.

How much does comprehensive and collision coverage cost?

On average, drivers pay $255 a year for comprehensive insurance and $687 a year for collision coverage, based on a 2022 rate analysis by

What you pay for comp and collision depends on factors such as your driving record, the vehicle you’re insuring, and where you live. View the chart below to find the average cost of collision and comprehensive coverage in your state.

The table below shows collision and comprehensive insurance costs by state.

StateAverage comprehensive premiumAverage collision premiumAverage combined premium
California$136$975 $1,111
Colorado$395$524 $919 
Connecticut$114$534 $648
Washington D.C.$218$852 $1,070
Delaware$154 $538 $692
Florida$204$549 $753
Georgia$162 $523 $685 
Hawaii$137$550 $687
Idaho$128 $426 $554
Illinois$169 $584 $753
Indiana$187$533 $720 
Kansas$467 $471$938 
Kentucky$258$535 $793
Louisiana$481$914 $1,395
Massachusetts$227 $718 $945
Maryland$165$782 $947 
Maine$108 $481 $589 
Michigan$795 $1,725 $2,520 
Mississippi$244$481 $725 
Montana$473$670 $1,143 
North Carolina$162$613$775 
North Dakota$371$430 $801 
Nebraska$673$577 $1,250
New Hampshire$110$422 $532 
New Jersey$132$642$774 
New Mexico$229 $626 $855
New York$191 $658 $849
Ohio$120 $491 $611
Oklahoma$408 $619 $1,027 
Oregon$101 $471$572 
Pennsylvania$190 $538$728 
Rhode Island$139 $688 $827 
South Carolina$319 $452$771 
South Dakota$735$458 $1,193 
Texas$294 $684 $978 
Utah$143 $707 $850 
Virginia$134$483 $617
Vermont$180 $475 $655
Washington$119 $402 $521 
Wisconsin$221 $702 $923 
West Virginia$255$555 $810 
Wyoming$556$74 $1,303

What happens if I don’t have comprehensive or collision car insurance? 

If you don’t add comprehensive and collision, your vehicle will have no coverage under your car insurance policy. In an at-fault accident, collision coverage is the only way to make a car insurance claim for your vehicle’s damage or total loss. Without it, you’ll have to pay out of pocket yourself.

Besides, if your car is struck by an uninsured driver, you can make a collision claim and your car insurance company will pay for your repairs, minus your deductible, and then go after the responsible party for compensation. That is much easier than you trying to get the uninsured party to personally pay for your damages, which could end up with you seeking a judgment against the other party in court.

Do I need comprehensive and collision insurance? 

Comprehensive and collision are optional coverages, as no state requires you to carry either of them.

If you’re leasing or financing your vehicle, the financial company will demand you carry comp and collision until the car is paid off or turned in. The car is the asset of the financial institution and, as the lender, it has the right to require you to get this coverage, carry a deductible (usually only $500 or less is required), and get any damage repaired.

Comprehensive and collision are a must if you want to file claims with your car insurance company for most types of damage to your car, including its total loss. There is no other type of insurance that will cover your vehicle in this way.

When to drop comprehensive coverage

Consider dropping comprehensive coverage if the following situations apply:

  • Your vehicle has a low resale value: Drop comprehensive coverage on your car if the market value of it is less than a few thousand dollars.
  • Your vehicle is covered by another policy: If your family member insures your vehicle on their policy, you don’t need to pay for it again. Your car can only be covered on a family member’s policy if it is kept at their house.

When to drop collision coverage

If you own your car, there are only a few reasons to drop your collision coverage:

  • If you’re currently not driving your car:  You don’t need collision car insurance if you never drive your car. However, comprehensive coverage can protect your vehicle against theft, vandalism, fire, and weather-related issues if it’s parked in a garage or storage. 
  • Your car is insured on another policy: If your car is insured on another policy that includes collision coverage, you don’t need to have collision coverage on your policy. But your car can only be insured on a relative’s policy if it is parked overnight at their address.
  • If your vehicle has minimal value: It’s a good idea to drop collision coverage if your vehicle is worth less than a few thousand dollars. This is especially true when you have a high deductible.

If you’ve kept your vehicle for a long time, past 10 years usually, your vehicle’s worth may have fallen so much that the cost of comprehensive and collision is no longer worth it.

How to save on collision and comprehensive car insurance

Adding collision and comprehensive coverage to your car insurance policy will make your premiums go up. But there are ways to save on collision and comprehensive insurance:

  • Increase your deductible
  • Complete a driver training or accident prevention course
  • Improve your credit score
  • Maintain a clean driving record 
  • Take advantage of discounts 
  • Enroll in a usage-based discount program
  • Bundle your home and auto insurance policies
  • Pay your annual car insurance premiums in full

Always ask your insurer if you’re receiving all the available discounts that should apply to your situation.

Comprehensive and collision insurance are two of the most important types of auto insurance coverage that every motorist should consider. After all, having this coverage can offer peace of mind during unfortunate events like a collision with another vehicle or when your car is stolen or vandalized. 

In addition, full coverage insurance is required by lenders if you lease or finance your vehicle. Be sure to research thoroughly and pick the right kind of policy for you.

Methodology commissioned Quadrant Information System to field rates for comprehensive and collision coverage with a $500 deductible from up to 123 company groups across the U.S. based on the profile of a 40-year-old driver with a clean driving record and good insurance score driving 2021 Honda Accord LX.

Frequently asked questions

Will a comprehensive claim increase insurance rates? 

Comprehensive claims generally won’t increase your rates unless state laws say otherwise. However, multiple claims of any kind can put you at risk for non-renewal or affect your rates eventually, such as three comprehensive claims in three years.

Does full coverage cover theft?

Yes. A full-coverage car insurance policy covers theft of the insured vehicle. You will need to provide the necessary documents to your auto insurance company to process the comprehensive claim.

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Shivani Gite
Contributing Writer


Shivani Gite is a personal finance and insurance writer with a degree in journalism and mass communication. She is passionate about making insurance topics easy to understand for people and helping them make better financial decisions.