This low-cost coverage option is not a good idea for most drivers.

 

If you’re trying to find the cheapest possible car insurance coverage, you may have come across broad form auto insurance policies. In many states, a broad form insurance policy does not meet minimum coverage requirements. This article will explain what broad form insurance is and help you decide if it’s the right coverage for you.

If you’re shopping for auto insurance, check out our article about the best car insurance companies on the market and request a free quote using our easy quote tool. You can also call (855) 518-0148 seven days a week for free quotes.

 

In this article:

What Is Broad Form Insurance?

Broad form car insurance, also called broad form named operator coverage, is a kind of liability insurance that only covers one individual. It extends to any car the policyholder operates. You pay the same amount no matter how many vehicles you own.

When you purchase traditional liability insurance, that policy covers a particular vehicle or vehicles under your name. If a friend, spouse, or child borrows your car, coverage extends to any accidents regardless of who is driving. Broad form insurance works differently.

Broad form coverage only covers your personal vehicle or vehicles. It does not cover commercial vehicles, company cars, or motorcycles.

As with liability coverage, broad form insurance will not cover damages to your own vehicle. It goes into effect when you are at fault in an accident. In that case, it would pay for the other driver’s repairs and medical expenses.

The following would not be covered under a broad form insurance policy:

  • Damages to your own vehicle
  • Your own medical payments
  • Liability payments if someone else is driving your car and gets into an accident

Broad form insurance coverage does not meet the minimum insurance coverage requirements for most states and is only available in:

Do not confuse broad form insurance with “broad collision coverage,” which is an expensive and comprehensive form of collision coverage that requires you to pay nothing (not even a deductible) if you are less than 50 percent at fault.

Pros And Cons Of Broad Form Insurance

Pros Cons
Broad form insurance is cheap. Broad form insurance covers very little. It will leave huge gaps in your coverage.
It can be used for multiple vehicles. It doesn’t cover other drivers that may drive your car.
It will pay liability damages for property and bodily injury. It does not meet the minimum insurance requirements in most states.
 

We don’t recommend broad form insurance for most drivers. But if you are wealthy enough to pay out-of-pocket to replace your vehicle, then it may be worth it.

Insurance is generally not worth it in the long term if you know you can afford replacement costs yourself. The risk-reward assessment will always be in the insurance company’s favor – that’s part of how these companies make money. The only reason to buy insurance (besides that it is required by law) is to protect yourself from financial ruin.

Over the course of your lifetime, chances are you will end up paying more in insurance premiums and deductibles than your insurance company will pay you. So if you can afford not to have insurance, it makes sense to purchase minimum state coverage requirements. If that’s the case, broad form insurance can be a good idea.

When you only have broad form insurance, never let someone else drive your car. If your friend gets into an accident and does not have some kind of liability coverage, they are exposed to a potentially massive lawsuit. If you’re considering broad form coverage to lower your premiums, talk it over with your insurance agent and consider other insurance options.

Top Auto Insurance Companies

If broad form insurance isn’t for you, you should purchase traditional car insurance coverage. Liability insurance will help you meet state requirements, but it won’t help you repair your vehicle if you get in a wreck and are at fault. If you’re trying to find the cheapest comprehensive or collision coverage, use our tool below or call (855) 518-0148 to compare auto insurance quotes.

 

The top auto insurers don’t usually offer broad form insurance, because they aren’t usually good policies. When we rank insurance companies, we consider claims servicing, customer satisfaction, and coverage breadth. Because they excel in all these categories, we recommend USAA and Geico as top providers.

USAA: Best For Military

USAA car insurance is only available to military members and their immediate family members. However, if you have access to it, USAA is an easy pick for car insurance. Not only does USAA have some of the lowest prices – including big discounts for active military personnel – but it receives high customer satisfaction marks.

We give USAA 5.0 stars out of 5.0, and it is our highest-rated provider for a reason. J.D. Power gives USAA top marks for claims servicing, and AM Best gives the auto insurance company an A++ financial strength rating.

Geico: Best Overall

Not everyone can get USAA car insurance. Geico auto insurance is a good alternative for those who can’t. Geico offers full coverage at competitive prices. It also sells add-ons like rental reimbursement, roadside assistance, and mechanical breakdown insurance.

Geico has an AM Best financial strength rating of A++ and a Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating of A-. Geico’s insurance apps make customer service quick and easy, with apps for claims filing and roadside assistance. You can even track your driving with the DriveEasy app, which can lower your premiums.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a broad form insurance policy cover?

Broad form insurance is a liability policy that only covers one person. Most types of liability insurance cover liability costs for a single vehicle no matter who is driving. Broad form insurance covers only one driver across multiple vehicles.

In many states, broad form insurance does not meet minimum insurance requirements. You can only purchase broad form insurance in:

  • Colorado
  • Delaware
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Maryland
  • Mississippi
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • Ohio
  • Tennessee
  • Washington

Is broad form insurance cheaper?

Broad form insurance is generally cheaper than standard liability coverage. Though premiums for broad form insurance are low, it offers very little insurance protection and is not recommended for most drivers. It will only cover liability for one driver.

What is the difference between basic and broad form coverage?

Basic liability coverage will pay for the other driver’s property damage and bodily harm if there is an accident and you are at fault. It will also cover liability damages if someone else is driving your car. Broad form coverage only covers liability damages if the policyholder is driving.