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Cover Levels

Motorists may purchase third party only, third party fire and theft, or comprehensive cover. Third party only is the legal minimum requirement to drive on public roads. Third party fire and theft covers motorists' third party liability plus cover in the case of fire or theft. Comprehensive covers the most, but it doesn't cover absolutely everything. Many policies include legal expenses cover and breakdown cover; exclusions apply.

Third Party Only

To legally drive on public roads or other public spaces, motorists must have third party only cover. It's the basic, cheapest cover that insures a third party in the case of an accident which the policyholder causes. At this level of cover, the policyholder's own damages and injury would not be insured. Since it's the most basic, the cover may be too limited for many people.

Third Party Fire and Theft Cover

In addition to the motorist's third party liability, third party fire and theft also covers loss or damage from theft, attempted theft, or fire. This provides a modicum more cover than third party only and will pay for damage to the motorist's own car in these specific instances. Motorists should be aware, however, that policies often come with exclusions that limit the cover for theft or fire. For example, if a car is stolen and the insurer finds out that the keys were left inside, the cover for loss will often be void; the motorist would have to pay for all of it.

Comprehensive Insurance

For motorists who want the most cover, comprehensive is typically the best option. It includes the third party liability, the cover for fire and theft, and cover for the motorist's injury and damage to his or her own car, no matter who caused the accident. Of course, because it offers the most cover, it's also the most expensive. It still doesn't cover everything. All policies have exclusions of which motorists must be aware. Comprehensive cover often includes extras like hire car cover, audio equipment cover, and so on.

Though pay-as-you-go policies allow motorists to include up to four cars on one policy, every car on the policy has to be covered at the same level. If they're on the same policy, one cannot cover one car at comprehensive and another at third party only. They must both be comprehensive or must both be third party only.

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