Does car insurance cover vandalism?

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Joel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Feb 24, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Your vehicle insurance will cover vandalism to and theft from your car if you have the proper coverage
  • Comprehensive insurance is what you need to protect your loss in the event of vandalism or theft
  • If you file a vandalism claim, your premiums should not increase

Someone broke into your car and you want to know if your car insurance will replace the stolen stereo under vandalism damages.

Well, this is highly possible depending on the type of car insurance policy you have. A full coverage car insurance policy is likely to take care of the problem.

There are certain cars that are just popular cars to steal. The Honda Accord topped the list of most commonly stolen cars in 2014. Reasons and outcomes for the thefts may vary, but there are models that are preferred by thieves, often for their parts.

Your insurance company keeps records of trends such as this in determining your insurance rate.

Enter you zip code in the tool above and start comparing auto insurance quotes today!

What type of insurance covers vandalism damages?

 image source

The law requires in all but the state of New Hampshire that all drivers have car insurance. The details involving car insurance vary from state to state. It is recommended that you become familiar with the car insurance laws in your in your state.

State laws hold drivers accountable for damages to the other driver.

There are three main types of coverage available for vehicles:

  1. Liability – States require liability coverage that will pay for damage to another driver, passenger, vehicle, or property. Some states are no-fault coverage states. Therefore, in the case of an accident, your insurance will pay for your car and the other driver’s insurance will pay for their car and no one is deemed at fault.
  2. Collision – If you are at fault in an accident or the other driver is uninsured, this type of coverage will absorb the cost.
  3. Comprehensive – Comprehensive coverage absorbs the cost of acts of nature and your vandalism claim.

What if someone vandalizes my antique vehicle?

Antique Car

If is painful to see damage done to a project that you have considered a labor of love. Most collectors or car restorers will take special care to obtain specialty insurance for their unique vehicles including:

Specialty insurance carriers know the value of a car or vehicle of this caliber.

Your policy is set up with an agreement between you and your carrier regarding replacement cost or actual cash value. This important aspect is usually discussed up front when the policy is established.

Emphasis is placed on collision and comprehensive coverage so that your policy carries enough in the case of an event.

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The average person would think that a specialty car insurance policy would cost more than a standard policy. Well, in comparison to a full coverage standard policy, a specialty policy may cost less.

This could be the case if you only drive your classic on Sundays, in car shows, parades or special events. It turns out if you drive your car less than 2500 miles per year, your car insurance is discounted.

Will my car insurance carrier raise my rate if I file a vandalism claim?


Your insurance carrier should not raise your rate for a vandalism claim. They consider the vandalism factor when giving you a quote. This is one of the reasons your zip code is necessary.

The agent will be able to determine whether you live in a neighborhood where vandalism is likely to happen.

Your carrier will consider the likelihood of theft from your zip code and make and model of your car. Many people are under the false assumption that thieves are not interested in their older car.

Older cars are actually preferred for their parts or for rebuilding. The National Insurance Crime Bureau keeps track of these statistics.

Do I need comprehensive car insurance to cover vandalism damages if my car is old?

old car

As your car depreciates, so does the need for comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive coverage replaces parts and pays claims based on the depreciation value of the car. This is the actual cash value discussed.

If your car has a lien on it or is financed, your lender may require comprehensive coverage.

In addition to required liability, collision and comprehensive constitutes full coverage in many cases.

The lender wants to protect their investment especially in the early years of purchase. If there is no lien on the car, collision and comprehensive coverages are not mandatory.

The fact that it is not mandatory by law allows people drop comprehensive coverage if they cannot afford the premiums.

The lack of comprehensive coverage in the event of vandalism could cost you a bundle.

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