Car insurance is an important requirement that ensures that drivers will be compensated in the case of an accident while using the insured vehicle. The degree of compensation that will be given will depend upon the agreed terms, the severity of the damage, and other factors agreed to by both parties.
Having car insurance can be a long and intricate task that involves having to get a personal agent of your own, filling up forms that describe the driver and the vehicle, and hours of processing for paper works. Because of this, some innovative minds have decided to look for another way to be able to give quality insurance to their customers.
What is Root Car Insurance?
Root Car Insurance is a newly developed car insurance system that utilizes its customers’ smartphones to make the process of applying easier. Instead of having to fill up paper-work featuring statistics like driver history, car specs, and such, you will only need to download their mobile app.
This technology is called usage-based insurance. This is because it utilizes technology and grades you through your performance as how they would see it through GPS. This removes the need for a personal agent who will review all the aspects in relation to the insurance. Your insurance premium will also be calculated depending on your performance. This makes it more convenient at the end of both the user and the company.
This is a new technology that has been used by a similar application, SnapShot, which rewards drivers based on driving performance, giving incentives when certain goals are achieved. In Root’s case, the drivers’ performance determines the cost of their insurance. It rewards those who drive safely and abide by traffic rules. Those who are prone to drive reckless or while drunk will not be accepted.
What does it calculate?
The standards for Root are still on-par with normal car insurance businesses minus the need for personal meet-ups with people. The test drive is used to measure the following according to their website:
- Braking – You will need to be more careful when making stops as sudden ones can cause your performance to be graded lower. Doing so may lead to more accidents, after all
- Hours – Your hours of driving will also be reviewed. Those who drive during hours that are safer and less prone to accidents may have a better performance rating
- Turns – Slower turns are safer ones
- Consistency of speed – It is better to go maintain an easy and smooth speed. Doing a lot of sudden speeds and stops may cause your performance to be graded lower
As seen in their standards, those who drive safer and can prevent accidents better are given lower insurance rates. This is why you should be careful whenever driving during the 60-day trial that they will give you.
How do they measure these factors?
Your phone will be the determining factor for this. You can use either an Android or an iPhone to do your trial drive. The application will require you to enable your GPS and motion sensors. The information they will collect based on your data feed will not be sold to third-parties, though.
The artificial intelligence within the application will be the one to calculate the factors in relation to your driving behaviour. The application is also smart enough to know if you are the driver or a passenger within the car depending on the motion that your phone can sense.
The coverage of Root includes:
- Bodily Injury (Required in all states) – This will pay for all medical and funeral expenses that may occur from having an accident. Lost wages may also be compensated. This fee is only paid to those whowill be affected due to the fault of the person with insurance. This is required by the law
- Property Damage (Required in all states) – This will pay for all damaged vehicles and property from an accident caused by an insurance holder. This is an important coverage as most accidents are prone to causing damage to vehicles and/or property. This will only pay for the party that was affected by an accident the insurance holder cause, though
- Collision Insurance – This is the coverage for the damage that will be done on your vehicle in an accident. This depends on a case-to-case basis. For example, only those who own vehicles thathave been damaged in a hit-and-run incident or by someone without car insurance
- Comprehensive Insurance – This is the coverage for damage to your vehicle by an event other than an accident. This may include having your vehicle stolen or damaged in a storm. This coverage pays for the repairs for your car. Like with the collision insurance, this is reviewed on a case-to-case basis
- Medical Payment (required in 8 states) – This pays for all injuries sustained by the insurance holder or their family member. Medical expenses in relation to an accident will be covered. This includes those from public transportation and other means of travel (including bike and other people’s cars). This acts somehow like medical insurance
- Personal Injury Protection (required in 17 states) – This covers the medical expenses and lost wages incurred from an accident involving the insurance holder and their family members regardless of the cause of the accident. This is important to make sure that you have paid for any accident that may happen while driving
- Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury – This covers the medical expenseswhen you are injured by a driver whois uninsured or underinsured. In case the other party doesn’t pay for your accident, this insurance makes sure that you will still be able to pay for the medical bills
- Uninsured Motorist Property Damage (Required in 8 states) – This covers the expenses that you may have from having your property damaged by an uninsured driver. To make sure that your property will still be fixed even if the uninsured driver is at fault, the insurance covers the payment. This covers damage from a hit-and-run.
- Rental Insurance – In case your vehicle is being repaired, the rental insurance gives you enough money to still be able to drive a car around by renting one. Aside from this, you may also choose to use Lyft credits instead to still be able to commute every day
- Roadside Assistance (Included in the policy) – Root covers the help that you will need in case there will be an emergency on the road in relation to your car. You can request it through the app. You are covered for up to three incidents per registered vehicle. There is a 100$ limit allotment per incident
Is Root Car Insurance recommended?
The fact that Root Insurance Co saves you time, helps you avoid paperwork and is a mobile-friendly service, are definitely strong selling points. So is the fact that they offer to help you terminate your contract with your prior car insurance company. Not to mention the fact that they don't place as much importance on your credit score as other companies.
On the other hand, Root Car Insurance falls a bit on short in terms of respecting the privacy of their customers. After all, the GPS and tracking requirements for the 60-day driving trial of the insurance constantly monitor your activities for it to be readily available whenever you are driving. Aside from this, using other means of transportation may also be measured along with the rating indicator which may cause a higher insurance rate.
Given that the service is only available for 20 states as of the moment, it is expected that more development will be made. A better implementation of the driver tracking system must be made to ensure that their users’ privacy will be taken care of.
How does it work and how much does it cost?
First, users will download the Root application on their mobile phones. If you plan to pursue insurance with them, you will then be subjected to instant insurance that is available for 60-days. This will depend upon your first test-drive with them. This is a good aspect that lets you have an idea of your final insurance rates at the end of your test-drive.
Through the span of 60 days, your performance will then be further analysed for them to be able to see your performance when driving. Through their artificial intelligence, factors to be considered will be continuously calculated. By the end of the trial, a final rate will be given to the user. If a user fails to pass by their standards, they will be informed of this. This means that the worst drivers will not be included in their service.
Root Insurance has a very straightforward website with plenty of explanations and a comprehensive FAQ section. However, if you fail to find an answer browsing their website, you can also contact them by phone or email. They claim they strive to reply to emails within 24 hours.
Phone: 1 866 980 9431
You can also find Root Insurance on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn
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