Q

What is broad form car insurance?

A

Broad form car insurance is a type of liability insurance that only covers one driver. It offers less coverage at a lower rate, but it is only available in 11 states.

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By 

Rachael Brennan

Rachael Brennan

Senior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance Expert

Rachael Brennan is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. Her work has also been featured in MoneyGeek, Clearsurance, Adweek, Boston Globe, The Ladders, and AutoInsurance.com.

Published May 13, 2022 | 3 min read

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Broad form car insurance provides basic insurance coverage at a low premium rate. Although the term “broad form coverage” sounds extensive, a broad form insurance policy actually offers a very limited amount of coverage. 

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Some states may allow drivers to have broad form insurance to cover the state minimum liability requirements, but most states don’t consider broad form auto insurance to be sufficient coverage.

Key takeaways

  • There are three basic forms of insurance: standard, broad, and limited. 

  • Broad form insurance coverage offers basic liability insurance that follows the driver, not the car.

  • Broad form insurance is only available in CO, DE, ID, IA, MD, MS, NE, NV, OH, TN, and WA

  • Broad form drive other cover coverage is a commercial auto policy for people who have a company car and do not own a personal vehicle.

What does broad form car insurance cover?

Broad form insurance coverage offers basic liability insurance that follows the driver, not the car. On a traditional insurance policy, the insurance company insures individual vehicles based on a number of factors, including who is driving them, but if you loan your car to a friend and they are in an accident, the odds are good the insurance company will cover the claim. 

With broad form insurance the policy covers the driver, not the car, which means the vehicle is only covered when it is being driven by the person insured on the policy. Broad form will only cover one licensed driver, which means that people who need to insure more than one driver in a household aren’t eligible for broad form coverage.

The broad form named driver is the only person covered in an accident, which means broad form coverage is best for drivers who don’t allow anyone else to drive their car. Drivers with broad form car insurance can have one policy that covers multiple cars without paying a higher premium. 

What is broad form drive other car coverage?

Broad form drive other cover coverage is a commercial auto policy for people who have a company car and do not own a personal vehicle. These drivers don’t have a personal auto policy, so they need the additional coverage to protect themselves while driving.

What is the difference between standard, broad, and limited form?

StandardBroadLimited
Standard insurance is what most people think of when they think about car insurance.Broad form insurance is cheaper because it offers significantly less coverage than a standard policy.Limited insurance coverage only pays for damage if you are not at fault in an accident.
Can include a combination of several types of coverage, including comprehensive, collision, liability, uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, and roadside assistance.Excludes claims that would typically fall under your collision coverage, personal injury coverage, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, and damages caused by other people driving your car.Limited insurance coverage is cheaper, but it will not meet state minimum requirements.
Pays no matter who was at fault, but often comes with a deductible for damages to your own vehicle.Broad form insurance also does not cover damages typically covered by comprehensive coverage, including theft, vandalism, and weather-related damage.May only be a functional option for people who are using the insurance to supplement coverage for someone who is self insured.
Broad form insurance also comes with a deductible for bodily injury and property damage that are caused if you are at fault in an accident.

Should you get broad form insurance?

The first thing to consider is whether or not broad form insurance is available in your state. Right now, only 11 states allow drivers to purchase broad form insurance.

Even in states where broad form insurance is available, it may not be enough coverage to meet the state’s minimum required coverage limits.

Broad form auto insurance may be a good fit for some drivers, but most people need robust insurance coverage. If you feel like broad form insurance might be a good fit for you, the best thing to do is to reach out to your insurance agent to find out if this type of coverage might be good enough to meet your needs.

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Is broad form insurance right for me?

Broad form insurance isn’t enough insurance for most people, so how do you know if it might be a good idea for you? Broad form insurance may be a good fit for you if:

  1. You are single

  2. You own an older car that you can afford to replace out-of-pocket if it is totaled in an accident

  3. You don’t drive much

  4. Nobody else ever drives your car

  5. You live in one of the states where broad form insurance is available

  6. You have the funds to pay for any damages that go beyond the limits of your insurance policy after an at-fault accident

If all six of these statements apply to you, broad form insurance may be enough to meet your needs.

What if I don’t own a car?

Since broad form insurance follows the driver, it may be tempting for people who drive regularly without owning their own vehicle, like people who regularly rent a car or borrow a car from a friend. However, drivers who don’t own a car may be better served by a non-owner policy instead of broad form coverage. 

Frequently asked questions

Isn’t broad form insurance a type of homeowners insurance?

There is a broad form type of homeowners insurance, but it is very different from broad form auto insurance. Broad form homeowners insurance is a named peril benefit, so if you are looking at a broad form policy that talks about named perils it isn’t an auto insurance policy.

Does broad form coverage include theft?

No, broad form coverage doesn’t include coverage for theft. Drivers who need coverage for theft should consider a full coverage insurance policy.

Is broad form the same as all risk?

All risk coverage insurance is a homeowners insurance policy that provides coverage for everything except what is excluded by the policy. Broad form homeowners insurance is essentially the opposite, only providing coverage for perils specifically named in the policy. This does not apply to broad form auto insurance.

Is broad form coverage worth it?

If you are the only one driving your vehicle, are the only one living in your household, and you can afford to replace your car out-of-pocket, broad form coverage may be a good way to keep your insurance costs low.