In 2015 and 2016, at least 10 lakh road accidents were reported in India, and nearly three lakh people lost their lives in the accident. A report from the transport research wing under the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways reveals that 34.5 per cent accidental death occurred on National Highways and 27.9 per cent accidental death took place on State Highways during these years. We cannot make these accidents negligible. However, the legislature has ensured that the liability originating from damage to property is diversified. As per the Motor Vehicles Act of 1988, a valid motor insurance is mandatory for plying any vehicle on road.
However, as customers, you don’t avail a hundred per cent immunity just by availing the mandatory third-party insurance. Even when you opt for a comprehensive insurance cover, it does not provide a full coverage to different degrees of damages. An individual should seek to add on cover vis-a-vis the risk exposure.
“It is wiser to opt for Emergency Assistance Cover which helps an individual in case of a breakdown, especially if an individual is stranded alone. Similarly, if an individual resides in a region that is prone to flooding, it is wiser to opt for Engine and Gearbox Protector Cover which will provide protection to the engine and electronic circuit in the car, especially during water-logging which increases the chances of damage to the engine.” says Animesh Das, Head of product Strategy- Acko General Insurance.
A full claim coverage often involves some add-ons. Here are 14 add-ons which will give you full coverage on your auto insurance
1) Return to Invoice
This will make sure the insurer gets the original invoice value of the car including the registration and road tax paid along with the value of the car at which it was insured during the purchase of the policy. In short, this add-on covers the gap between the insured declared value and the invoice value of the car. This add-on is not to be used to claim for repairs and small damages. It is used to retrieve the financial loss of a stolen car or a car that has been damaged beyond repair.
2) Emergency Roadside Assistance
With this, the insurer provides certain emergency services like refuelling, towing, change of flat tyre, mechanic’s services and so on in case the car breaks down
3) Engine Protection Cover
If you are staying in an area that is prone to flooding during the rains, this add-on cover is a must for you. This cover provides coverage against damage to the engine of the vehicle due to water ingression leading to hydrostatic lock. It also covers cases like leakage of lubricating oil and damage to the gearbox.
4) Cost of Consumables
If the vehicle meets with an accident, the insurers exclude the cost of consumable replaced such as nuts and bolts, engine oil, bearings and so on in standard motor insurance policy. If the insured opts for this add-on, the value of such consumables will be included in the claim amount.
5) Multi-year policy
A multi-year policy covers the two-wheeler for a period of up to 3 years that will ensure coverage against legal liability for injury, death, owner-driver and optional personal accident cover for a pillion passenger, and property damage caused to a third party in the event of an accident.
6) Zero Depreciation Cover
This add-on is highly recommended for new cars, as this is helpful to reduce the cost of losses the insured would otherwise have to bear due to the wear and tear of replaced parts plastic/rubber, fibre, metal and paint material. Also known as nil depreciation or bumper, it leaves out the depreciation factor from the coverage, giving you the complete cover. It costs anywhere between 15-20% of the standard premium and proves to be beneficial for people with luxury cars and expensive spare parts.
7) Personal Accident Cover
Opting for a personal accident cover will ensure that an individual gets adequate protection against any physical loss or disability during a car accident
8) Accessories Cover
If an individual customises his/her car, one must ensure that the changes made to the car do not nullify the insurance. For e.g.: Modification made to the engine or mechanical setups usually do not come under the standard cover. Additionally, there is a limit to the value of customisation that can be insured under any policy. It is important to check with the agent on any such limits before giving the car that facelift
9) Voluntary Deductibles
One could opt for the voluntary deductible in case they feel the cost of buying car insurance is expensive. Voluntary deductible lets an individual share the cost of repair in case of any claim.
10) No Claim Bonus (NCB)
Vehicle owners, who do not make a single claim during the term of the insurance policy, can avail a discount on renewal of the policy, known as No Claim Bonus (NCB). However, if an individual already has an NCB Certificate from the previous vehicle policy, which may have been sold, one can avail for the same in the new policy to get a discount on the premium.
11) Network Garages
It is important that vehicle owners are aware of the garages that are associated with the insurance company for cashless claims. This is helpful in case of a large claim amount. An individual will have to pay from their pockets, in case the car is taken to a garage that is not part of the insurer’s network. In such cases, the policyholder will have to file the claims which will be paid as a reimbursement. Most insurers today offer the facility to file the claims online, which make it easy for the customers
12) Engine protection
An engine is often described as the most important part of a vehicle. Usually, damages to the engine are not covered under a comprehensive policy. Your vehicle’s engine will be insured against damages due to flooding, consequential losses etc. with the Engine Protection Add-on.
13)Personal Belonging Cover
Nowadays, people travel in cars with their expensive gadgets such as laptop, tablet, smartphone, etc. These gadgets can also be damaged if the car is involved in an accident. Damage to such gadgets is not covered under a vehicle insurance policy unless you have a Personal Belonging Cover. This also covers the loss of other personal belongings from your car.
14) Pillion Rider Cover
Just as a Personal Accident Cover is designed for the rider, the Pillion Rider Cover is meant for the passenger seated behind you on the bike. This cover is helpful to seek compensation for medical expenses incurred for catering to the medical needs of the injured pillion rider. If you own a car, you can opt for the Passenger Cover Add-on.