• 1930 E Rosemeade Pkwy Ste 215 Carrollton, TX 75007
  • 972-394-2000
Shedding Light On Car Insurance Savings
It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates – as an independent agency, Mike Leonard can help!

Liability covers bodily injury and property damage (BI/PD). This covers your legal liability, up to the dollar limits you select, for damages caused to others in a covered vehicle accident. In most states today, liability insurance is mandatory.

Under BI/PD, your insurance company pays for damages to an injured person and for property damage that you are legally obligated to pay as a result of an accident. If your policy covers you in the event you’re sued after an accident, your insurance company will pay for a lawyer to defend you.

Liability limits generally appear as three numbers, for example, 25/50/25 or 100/300/100. The first number refers to the maximum amount, in thousands, that your insurance company is obligated to pay for bodily injury per person. The second number is the maximum that would be paid out for bodily injury per claim and the third number represents the maximum amount your insurance company is obligated to pay for property damage you cause.

Traveling With Pets

Do you travel with your dog or cat when RV’ing? Is your pet more than a companion? Is he or she a member of your family? You’re not alone. Most of the 8 million people with RV’s, according to the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association, bring pets along on trips.

If this includes you, great news! Pet injury coverage from Progressive protects your furry four-legged friends in the event of an accident.In the past, RV insurance policies covered the people … but not the pets … inside RVs. Not any more. Progressive offers free pet injury coverage with collision and comprehensive coverage and pays up to $500 if your dog or cat is hurt or dies because of a crash, fire or flood.“RVing is more fun when the entire family, including pets, is along for the ride,” said Cathy Pelfrey of Progressive. “This coverage gives pet owners something no other RV insurer offers – peace of mind from knowing that their dogs and cats are protected, too.”

Progressive was the first insurer to introduce pet injury protection to its car insurance customers.For more information about Progressive RV Insurance, contact Mike Leonard Insurance Agency today!

Depending on the state in which you live, you may have available to you Medical Payments coverage or Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. While these both work differently, they provide coverage for medical care provided to you as a result of a car accident.

Comprehensive covers damage caused by events other than a car collision—such as fire, theft, vandalism, hail or flood. It also covers damage caused by your vehicle colliding with an animal. And if your car is stolen, it will cover the cost of a rental, subject to a daily limit. Like collision coverage, a deductible usually applies.

When you buy collision coverage, your insurance company pays for damages if your vehicle collides with another vehicle or object. Collision coverage involves a deductible amount you select when you purchase your policy. This amount is what you are required to pay before your insurance company starts picking up the tab. Remember, the deductible amount is the amount you need to pay in the event of a claim.

The Insurance Research Council (IRC) estimates that 1 driver out of every 7 drivers in the United States is currently uninsured. This is especially startling considering that an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver can result in significant costs that aren’t covered by a basic liability insurance policy.

To protect law-abiding drivers, many states are now requiring uninsured motorist coverage in their car insurance policies to help with costs associated with injuries after being involved in a car accident with an uninsured driver.

Additionally, drivers may have the option to purchase uninsured motorist property damage that covers damages to your vehicle and/or other property caused by an uninsured driver in an accident.

In the event of an auto accident, uninsured motorist (UM) coverage – also called uninsured motorist bodily injury (UMBI) insurance – will cover you and your passengers for:

  • Medical expenses.
  • Pain and suffering.
  • Lost wages.

Under this car insurance policy, you and your passengers will also be covered if you are the victim of a hit-and-run accident.

Insurance Tips

Tips For Protecting Boats and Motorcycles

Before you take your motorcycle on the road or put your boat on the water, it may pay to be certain your insurance is ship-shape.

Motorcycles and boats are often significant investments, and the right insurance policy can help protect them. Here are a few tips, courtesy of Mike Leonard:

  • Evaluate your specific needs. Insuring a boat or a motorcycle is different than insuring your car or home. A specialized motorcycle policy, for instance, can provide coverage for custom paint jobs and aftermarket equipment that might not be covered if the bike were just added to a generic auto policy.
  • Similarly, a specialized boat policy could cover things like the cost to replace lost or damaged fishing gear and costly services such as emergency on-water towing and fuel-spill cleanup. You probably wouldn’t get this coverage by adding a boat to a homeowner’s policy.
  • Consult with an independent agency – like Mike Leonard. Unlike “captive” agents who represent only one company, independent insurance agents and brokers are licensed insurance professionals who represent several companies. They can offer you a variety of coverages, review and evaluate your policies, suggest new coverage options that meet your changing needs and answer your questions.

“An independent insurance agent or broker can make sure you have the specialized coverage you need to protect your boat or bike,” said Jim Lloyd, of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. “Some insurance companies provide only bare-bones protection for your boat or motorcycle by simply adding it onto your existing auto or homeowner’s policy, but independent agents and brokers can review and evaluate your needs to help match you with the company that will provide you with the combination of specialized coverage, service and price that’s best for you.”

Insurance News and Notes

(NAPS)—Many consumers are finding they can drive down the cost of car insurance—and the time it takes to select the right policy— by contacting an independent insurance agent or broker.

Because they represent many different insurance companies, independent agents have the flexibility to review rates and coverage from competing carriers and get you the best deal. Plus, they can offer affordable protection for your home, business and other assets. So rather than spending hours gathering quotes from various companies, you can get it done with one simple call or visit to your independent agent or broker.

If you’re thinking of contacting an independent agent, here are a few things to consider:

  1. What’s your lifestyle? Many factors determine auto insurance rates, not just vehicle year, make and model. Companies also look at information about you. If you’ve recently moved, gotten married, had a birthday or experienced a similar life milestone, mention this to your independent agent or broker. You may be eligible to save money on your car insurance.
  2. Sweet 16 doesn’t have to be sour. Having a new teenage driver usually means the auto insurance bill will go up, but there are ways to save. An independent agent or broker can find them for you.
  3. How old is your car? You don’t always need the same level of physical damage coverage on older cars as on newer ones. If you drive an older car, your independent agent or broker can advise you what level of coverage makes the most sense. If you want to keep your physical damage coverage, consider raising your deductible—that could save you money each year, too.

•Save money on the fun stuff. If you have a motorcycle, boat, RV or other “toy,” you might save money by having it covered by the same company that insures your car. Talk to your independent agent or broker about it.

You may also want to consider separating your homeowner’s policy from your car insurance policy. Bundling your homeowner’s policy with your car insurance doesn’t always save you money. It may, but have your independent agent look at separating the policies— the discount you may have gotten for keeping them together may be outweighed by the lower price another company might have for your car insurance.

Tips For The Road Ahead

Whether you’re traveling alone, with a buddy or with your spouse and a car full of kids, there are few things more “American” than the long-distance road trip. Countless vacation travelers will drive the highways looking for fun and making memories with every mile. If traveling down the “holiday road” is in your plans, take the time to prepare for your trip. You’ll have a more enjoyable vacation if you plan carefully. Here are a few driving tips, courtesy of Mike Leonard Insurance Agency:

  1. Maintain your car. Make sure your vehicle is up to date on its maintenance schedule, and be sure to check the battery and tires.
  2. Plan your trip and know where you’re going. Call ahead for proper and safe directions to get you to your destination safely and have maps of the area on hand to help you navigate once you are off the main road. You’re more likely to make good decisions, even in dangerous situations, if you’re clearheaded and know where you’re going.
  3. Be alert. Seems obvious, but driver inattention is surely the cause of a lot of accidents. If you stay focused behind the wheel and plan carefully, you will have a wonderful summer road trip.
  4. Take precaution with a cell phone. Cell phones can be a lifesaver when you need immediate access to emergency services after an accident. Keep your phone within easy reach and get to know its features. However, use it prudently. Reports suggest that driving while talking on the phone increases accident rates.
  5. Wear your seat belt. Whether or not it’s required by law in the state through which you’re driving, always wear your seat belt as a safety precaution.
  6. Protect your car against theft. Help deter criminals from taking your car with steering wheel locks, switches that disable fuel or ignition systems, and electronic tracking devices.
  7. What to do if your in an accident. Taking immediate steps if you’ve been in an accident can protect your family and your car from further damage. Stop immediately and make sure your car is not blocking traffic. Turn off your car to keep it from overheating or catching fire. Warn oncoming cars using road flares or orange triangle reflectors. After you have protected yourself and your family, call your insurance company immediately.
  8. Make sure your auto insurance is up to date. Before you even leave the driveway, you want to be sure you’re protected when you’re on the road and far from home. An independent insurance agent or broker can provide the personal service and advice you need to travel in confidence.

Shedding Light On Car Insurance Savings

It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates – as an independent agency, Mike Leonard can help! We can review your policy and possibly help you find a variety of illuminating ways to save money. Here are some things you may want to consider:

• Ask us to check several companies’ rates. This is the single most important thing you can do to get the best possible rate—and we can do it for you quickly and easily. The difference between the highest and lowest rate available to you from different companies could vary by hundreds of dollars.

• Reduce or drop physical damage coverage on an older car. Depending on your car’s age and where you live, comprehensive and collision coverage may not be worth keeping. We can give you advice on whether it makes sense to reduce or drop this coverage altogether.

• Raise your deductible. According to the Insurance Information Institute, raising your deductible from $200 to $500 could reduce your collision and comprehensive cost by 15 to 30 percent. In addition, because the average driver files a collision claim only once every ten years, odds are that over the lifetime of your car, a higher deductible will save you money. We can show you how raising your deductible will lower your premium.

• Look for discounts. Many insurance companies reduce premiums for certain driver traits or car features. A Fe examples are: being a homeowner for more than three years, nonsmoker, nondrinker, students with good grades, senior citizens who have taken an approved defensive driving course, people who only drive for pleasure, cars kept in garages, anti-lock brakes, anti-theft devices, air bags, etc. Ask us to check.

• Don’t assume having your car and home insured by the same company is the best option. Because auto insurance rates vary so much from company to company, it may make sense for you to have your car and home insured by separate companies. Let’s talk about it.

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