Your vehicle is parked safely in the parking lot as you race into the grocery store – but when you return you find that your car has been broken into and your belongings inside were stolen. One of the first questions you ponder is, “does my auto insurance cover theft?”
Whether or not insurance covers theft can differ depending on the situation and the type of auto insurance you own. Comprehensive coverage will often cover theft, as well as repair costs from break-in damages. Liability insurance likely will not cover theft, as it often protects against bodily injury and property damage resulting from an accident.
Let’s check a few different scenarios to offer you a better idea of what your vehicle insurance will cover in the event of car theft.
Car theft and insurance scenarios
First Scenario: Your vehicle was damaged as a result of a break-in.
If you own comprehensive coverage, you’re in luck. Comprehensive insurance will typically cover repair costs for your car, which may include:
- Broken door locks
- Smashed windows
- Broken ignition system
Second scenario: Your vehicle was stolen.
This situation also depends on the type of vehicle insurance you have. If you have comprehensive coverage, your car’s value will be covered.
Third scenario: Your personal items were stolen from your vehicle.
So, does vehicle insurance cover stolen items? Unfortunately, it does not. Comprehensive auto insurance will only cover the components and features that are permanent, pre-installed parts of the vehicle. It will not cover your own personal belongings left inside, such as an iPod or wallet. However, these items would likely be covered by a home owner or renters insurance policy. If your vehicle were stolen with personal items inside, you would need to file two different claims – one through your auto insurance and one through your homeowners insurance.
Does vehicle insurance cover vandalism?
As long as you follow the proper steps, comprehensive vehicle insurance will offer coverage in the unfortunate event your car is vandalized. Here are the actions you should take immediately following the incident:
- Call the police to report the vandalism, as your vehicle insurance company will need you to file a police report.
- Make note of all damages to your vehicle and take pictures to document the destruction.
- You will have to contact your auto insurance company to submit a claim. You will be required to have the list of damages you compiled, pictures of the damages, and a list of any items that got stolen.