If you’re a Pennsylvania resident looking for insurance, you’re in the right place. We’ve compiled all the info you need to help you find home, auto, life, health or long term care insurance right here on this page.
We recommend you read it over, contact the Pennsylvania Insurance Department at (717) 783-0442 with any questions, and let us help you find the coverage you need today.
The best way to shop for auto insurance is to get educated. Smart shopping and knowledge empowerment is needed to make an informed decision. Below is some information we’ve provided to help educate you as you search for the right car insurance in your state.
Pennsylvania is a no-fault state. That means drivers are required to purchase Personal Injury Protection (PIP) so their auto insurance company will cover injury-related expenses as a result of an accident—regardless who is at fault. This insures that every motorist who needs it receives immediate medical attention.
In most cases, this also limits drivers from suing or being sued for damages as a result of an accident. However, if you are at fault, you may be subject to a lawsuit collecting damages.
Your state requires certain auto insurance coverages all drivers must carry.
- $5,000 in medical benefits
- $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident in bodily injury liability; and
- $5,000 in property damage liability
To clarify, medical benefits coverage pays medical bills for anyone covered under your policy regardless of fault. Bodily injury pays medical and rehabilitation expenses to anyone for whose injuries you are liable. Property damage liability pays for damages to another person’s property caused by an accident in which you are at fault.
It is possible to purchase a single limit of $35,000 which meets both the bodily injury liability and the property damage liability requirements. But not all insurance companies offer this coverage. Ask your insurance agent to find out if this coverage is available, if you’re interested.
Medical insurance in your state generally falls under one of two categories: group or individual. Typically, an employer offers its employees health coverage through a group plan, whereas a person purchasing a health care plan on his or her own from an agent or company purchases an individual health plan.
The types of health insurance policies you may be presented include:
- Fee-for-Service Plans: Often called traditional or indemnity health insurance
- Managed-Care Plans: Include Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs), Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs), and Point-of-Service plans (POS)
Fee-for-Service plans enlist the health insurance company in paying all or a portion of medical bills after the ensured has received treatment. Usually, any doctor or health care provider may be chosen.
In contrast, managed-care plans provide comprehensive services and medical treatments to enrollees for a periodic, fixed fee. However, those utilizing this type of coverage must usually use contracted health care providers, who service their needs and charge negotiated rates. If an ensured chooses to go outside the contracted network of health care providers, coverage may not be extended, except in case of an emergency.
Basic hospital, surgical and medical insurance pays daily hospital room and board costs. This coverage also pays for specified hospital services and supplies up to a predetermined amount. Time and dollar limits apply to these benefits, so your insurance provider may pay the total costs incurred, a fixed amount per day, or simply a fixed percentage of all covered costs for a certain length of time.
Major medical insurance provides broader coverage than basic health insurance. Its intent is to provide additional protection against the high costs associated with serious or continuing illness. Benefits are payable for longer periods of time, and a large maximum lifetime benefit is provided, instead of smaller dollar and time limits.
Many supplemental health insurance policies are also available, including disability, long term care, accident and Medicare Supplement.
State residents may take advantage of many different types of health insurance coverage. Talk to your insurance agent or company to determine which coverages are necessary or warranted in your particular situation.
Over 200 licensed insurance companies currently sell home insurance in Pennsylvania. The cost depends, in part, on the area of the state in which you live. However, there are many other cost-determining factors, so comparison shop and make sure you are getting quotes for identical coverage when you make price comparisons.
Although homeowners insurance is not required, your lender may require you to purchase it in order to qualify for financing.
Several types of policies are commonly offered, so it is important to do your research and become informed before choosing and signing on the dotted line.
Some of the more frequently presented policies include:
- Homeowners Broad Form (Form 2): Covers damage due to named perils such as hail, fire, vandalism, explosion, smoke, falling objects, plumbing breaks and personal liability.
- Homeowners Special Form (Form 3): Covers risk of loss to physical property with certain specified exclusions. Also covers same perils as Form 2 for loss of contents and personal liability. More comprehensive and inclusive than Form 2.
- Tenant’s Homeowners Form (Form 4): A tenant’s or renter’s policy which offers coverage for personal property for all perils listed above, including personal liability.
Condominium Homeowners Form (Form 6): Designed to cover condominium owners’ personal property and liability, and damage to the dwelling due to perils listed above.
Home insurance providers recommend you carry 100 percent replacement coverage on your home in case of loss.
Now, some tips for your protection:
- When you receive a home insurance policy, read it thoroughly, making sure you understand its contents. The policy is a legal contract, so do not sign anything until you have clarified anything you do not understand. Ask the agent or insurance company about anything you don’t understand.
- Check all agent/company licensing. It is illegal for unlicensed insurers to sell insurance. If you conduct business with an unlicensed company or agent, you have no guarantee that coverage will be honored, or that you will be protected if the company goes out of business.
- Shop and compare. Prices can vary greatly for the same coverage, so do your homework!
- Set deductibles as high as possible. This will save you money on your home insurance premium.
- Ask about all available discounts. Some insurers offer premium discounts for installing safety items in your home, such as deadbolt locks, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers or fire alarms. Other discounts include those for multiple policies, excellent payment/low claims histories, and a discount for senior citizens, to name just a few.
- Check with your insurance agent or company at least once a year to review your policy and ensure you have adequate coverage. As needs and conditions change, so should your coverage.
Buying life insurance requires looking for a policy that meets your needs and the needs of your family—without costing too much.
The first step in this process is determining how much life insurance you actually need. You can arrive at this figure by examining the financial resources your dependents would have if you died now, and what they would need to maintain their current standard of living. Your life insurance policy should make up the difference, or at least come as close as possible.
Take all assets and income into consideration, including savings, investments, personal property and any real estate owned. Conversely, consider your family’s cost of living, educational costs and any other potential financial needs down the road.
Determining how much coverage you can afford is the next step. Closely examine your budget and living expenses to determine a comfortable, affordable monthly premium. Keep this figure in mind when talking to insurance agents, and do not let them pressure you into spending more on your life insurance than you’ve already decided on.
Finally, investigate the various types of policies available, and pick the one that best suits you and your family. Comparison shop, examining both coverage and prices charged.
Several types of policies are available, including term life, permanent or cash value, and other policies which combine the two.
Term life policies cover you for only a specific period of time or until a specified age, and include only a one-time death benefit payment.
Permanent or cash value life policies provide permanent protection, and may include both a death benefit and cash savings. Term life is generally cheaper, but its cost increases as you get older. Permanent life involves higher premiums, but its price usually remains steady.