Does Car Insurance Cover Theft? 6 Common Questions Answered

Does Car Insurance Cover Theft? What Your Coverage Plan Does & Does Not Cover

So, you’re running late for your movie, and your friends are sitting in the theater, popcorn in hand and saving you a seat. You hastily park the car, slam the door, and run inside. Two hours later, you walk back to the parking garage with your friends late at night, only to find that your car is no longer there. 

According to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), movie complexes are among the most common sites for vehicle theft and vandalism. The truth is, theft and vandalism can happen anytime, anywhere. Whether you forgot to lock the car outside of the grocery store or you parked it in the alley behind the office, insurance can cover the fallout. 

Before panic-typing “stolen car what to do” into your Google search engine, take a deep breath and keep in mind the following information.

What does my car insurance cover?

The average comprehensive policy typically covers (a) vehicle theft, (b) stolen parts replacement, and (c) vandalism repairs. 

So, what is comprehensive coverage? Unlike liability insurance, comprehensive coverage recoups your losses from non-collision related incidents. These include vandalism, car theft, and natural damage, such as damage occurring from falling branches or floods. 

While this form of insurance does not cover rented vehicles, it can cover vehicles owned outright that find themselves victims of various types of theft.

Does car insurance cover theft of personal items?

The unfortunate reality is that car insurance does not cover the theft of personal items. However, the theft of personal items can be covered by homeowner’s insurance. 

Though the coverage of personal property may diminish while away from the residency, off-premises insurance is still an option for individuals concerned about expenses incurred by theft of certain personal items. The policy holder need only file two separate claims: one for the vehicle and one for the items within.

Does car insurance cover vandalism or break-in damage as a result of theft?

The concise answer is yes, under certain conditions. Vandalism includes both structural and superficial damage, ranging from a minor dent or scratches to smashed windows. To receive coverage, the owner must document damage, call the local authorities to file a report, and then proceed to file a claim with their provider.

Does insurance cover stolen parts?

The average comprehensive policy will cover stolen parts contingent on their origin. Often, policies will cover the theft and removal of parts installed during manufacturing processes, but not parts installed to enhance the vehicle, such as a newly installed stereo system, connected car center console, and more. 

It is important to check your policy for coverage specificities regarding Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts and aftermarket parts.

Does insurance cover theft?

When you exit the theater and find your car missing, the first thought that comes to mind is “Does car insurance cover theft?” The answer is yes, regardless if the vehicle is recovered or not. 

After documenting details, contacting local authority, and filing a claim, your insurance company will be in touch to explain the following steps regarding theft investigation and recovery.

But what happens if your car is stolen and never found? 

First, take a deep breath and rest assured that you will be covered in the event your vehicle is stolen. 

If your vehicle is never recovered, you will be reimbursed according to your vehicle’s depreciated value. The amount paid out by the insurance company is equal to the depreciated vehicle value up until your comprehensive coverage limit, minus your deductible. 

According to the National Crime Insurance Bureau (NCIB), the average vehicle valuation per theft is $8,886. Let’s round that up. If your plan includes a $500 deductible and your vehicle’s depreciated value is $9,000, your insurance provider will compensate your loss with $8,500. 

Vehicle Recovery Assistance

Many car insurance providers recommend installing a GPS tracking system in vehicles that do not come already equipped with one, especially as car value surges. This technology assists in a speedy recovery in the event of vehicle theft, minimizing the damage done to the vehicle. 

With Elo GPS installed in your car, you not only equip your ride with real-time location tracking technology but have access to a 24/7 vehicle recovery hotline and dedicated recovery agent. 

To learn more about how Elo GPS can provide you with recovery assurance and peace of mind, contact our support team to find a dealership near you.