Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager Chris Harrigan

UPDATED: Apr 13, 2022

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Key takeaways...

  • A deductible is the portion of money that you’re responsible for paying before you’re eligible to file a claim
  • Car insurance deductibles only apply to physical damage coverage on an auto insurance policy
  • Policyholders have the right to choose varying deductibles for both comprehensive and collision coverage
  • If you carry a $500 deductible for comprehensive loss, you must have a $500 deductible or larger for collision losses
  • You may not be responsible for your deductible if you’re found to be not at fault for a collision

Start comparing car insurance rates now by using our FREE quote tool above! When you buy insurance, you’re passing on the burden of paying for losses to a large and wealthy insurance company.

While you might think that the entire burden is transferred, you’ll actually be asked to share some of the risk if you decide to carry physical damage coverage on your covered auto.

The portion that you’re responsible for paying after you’ve experienced a covered loss is called a deductible.

If you’re in the process of building an insurance policy and you’re not familiar with how insurance deductibles work, read on and learn more about the $500 deductible.

What is an insurance deductible?


A car insurance deductible is the fixed amount of money that you’ll be obligated to pay towards a loss when your car is in need of repairs or replacement. If the damages from a loss don’t exceed your deductible, you won’t be able to file a claim.

As a named insured, you’re free to select the deductible that you’re most comfortable with.

When damages do exceed your deductible, the deductible that you carry will be deducted from your claims payout.

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How does a $500 deductible work when you file a claim?

Since the deductible is the amount that’s deducted from your payout after an insured loss, you can expect that $500 will be deducted from your claim after the claim has been investigated.

If the adjuster determines that you’re responsible for the loss or your claim is subject to a deductible, you’ll receive a check with the deduction.

So if you have a loss where the estimated cost of repairs is $6000 and you carry a $500 deductible, you’ll receive a check for a total of $5500.

Which coverage options aren’t subject to a deductible?

Not every coverage option listed on your personal auto insurance policy is subject to a deductible. In fact, any coverage options that are required by the state that you live in aren’t subject to any type of risk sharing or deductible.

Those mandated limits will pay out without requiring you to make payment first. Here’s a list of the coverage options where the full limits with payout without a deductible:

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Which coverage options are subject to a deductible?

Coverage for physical damage to your car is subject to a deductible. This includes both comprehensive coverage and collision coverage, which each pay for different types of damage losses.

The deductible, which can also be called coinsurance, is designed to help deter policyholders from filing claims for every little bit of damage. It protects the insurance company and also protects you from filing a claim that might raise your rates.

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What are your deductible options?


You aren’t obligated to choose a $500 deductible, but it’s the most common option among consumers today for collision coverage. It’s important that you’re familiar with all of your options when you’re trying to price the cost of insurance.

Very few carriers still offer consumers the option to select a $0 deductible for a higher premium unless the client has been grandfathered in. Here’s a list of some of the most common comprehensive and collision deductibles offered by reputable insurers:

  • $50
  • $100
  • $200
  • $250
  • $500
  • $750
  • $1000
  • $2000 (for luxury cars)

When am I charged a $500 comprehensive deductible?

You’re almost always charged your comprehensive deductible when you’re filing a comprehensive claim. Comprehensive claims are those where your vehicle has been damaged after a fire, vandalism, theft, explosion, flood or encounter with a live animal.

The only time when you’re not charged for your $500 claim is when you’re filling a glass claim where the windshield is damaged but still salvageable.

You may need a deductible waiver for glass damage or a special endorsement for full rock chip repair to avoid being responsible for the large deductible for minor glass repair costs.

When am I charged a $500 collision deductible?

Collision claims and deductibles take some investigations before you’ll know if you’re responsible for paying the $500 for repairs. If you’re obviously at fault for the loss, then you’re full deductible will be deducted from the check made to the auto body repair shop.

If you’re not at fault for the loss, the claims adjuster will have to come into an agreement with the third-party insurer before your deductible can be waived.

If you need your car fixed before the companies can come to an agreement, you may have to pay your deductible and then wait for the amount to be reimbursed to you once the claim has been settled.

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How does the deductible you choose affect your premiums?

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If you’re still not sure which deductible to choose, it’s important that you learn how the amount you select can affect your premiums. Generally speaking, the higher your deductible the lower your physical damage premiums, but how much lower depends on your risk class.

On the average, going from a $250 to a $500 deductible will only save you around for $30 per year for comprehensive coverage. But if you look at collision coverage, it could save you a pretty penny as a high-risk driver. You’ll need to look at your personal rates.

If you’d like to find out how much you’ll pay for $500 deductibles on your car, it’s time to price shop the market. You can either call several different insurance carriers to solicit custom quotes or you can use a special intelligent software tool that’ll display these quotes all at once.

Use an online rate comparison tool, enter your personal car information and your personal details, and then you can decide if the $500 deductible is best or if you’re better off with a lower deductible.

Start comparing car insurance rates now by entering your zip code in our FREE quote tool below!