Does Car Insurance Cover Busted Headlights and Tail Lights?

If you have comprehensive insurance, your policy might cover damage like broken headlights or busted tail lights—depending on how the damage happened.
Written by Jacoba Bood
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Aug 12, 2021
Your
car insurance
might cover damage to your headlights or tail lights, depending on the type of coverage you have and how the damage happened.
Nobody wants to get strapped with a
ticket
for driving with a light out—not to mention that this is a safety hazard. If you’re wondering if your car insurance will cover repairs on your car lights, insurance comparison app
Jerry
has compiled everything you need to know.
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Does insurance cover broken tail lights?

It might—but it depends on how your headlights or tail lights were damaged and what
type of insurance coverage
you have.

Comprehensive insurance

Comprehensive coverage
is a car insurance coverage option designed to help protect your car from damage resulting from external events.
Comprehensive insurance typically covers storm, flood, and fire damage, as well as incidents of
theft
and vandalism. If your headlights or tail lights sustained damage due to any of these types of events, there’s a good chance your comprehensive policy will cover it.

Collision insurance

Collision coverage
is an upgrade designed to help cover drivers for damage resulting from a collision with another vehicle or object, regardless of who is at fault. Many collision insurance policies will cover single-vehicle rollover situations, too.
If your head or tail lights were damaged in a collision and you have collision insurance. you can rest assured that your policy will probably cover the repairs.

Basic liability coverage

Even if you don’t have collision or comprehensive insurance on your car, your basic
liability coverage
may cover headlight or tail light repairs.
But there’s a caveat: the damage would have to have occurred as a result of an accident where you were not at fault. If your headlights and tail lights were damaged in any other way, you’d be out of luck.
Key Takeaway Comprehensive insurance covers damage that occurred as a result of external events, while collision coverage pays for damage incurred due to an accident. Liability insurance may cover head and tail light damage if it happened in a not-at-fault accident.

Is filing a claim worth it?

Even if your existing insurance policy will cover damage to your headlights and tail lights, you might want to think twice before you file a claim.
If the cost of repairs is lower than your deductible, there’s no point in making a claim. Review your deductible before claiming for headlight or tail light damage.
Even if your deductible is slightly lower than the cost of repairs, you’re likely to get strapped with a higher premium for making a claim—so it might not be worth it in the long run.
That said, it’s not uncommon for incidents that cause damage to your headlights or tail lights to also cause damage to other parts of the car. If this is the case, filing a claim is often a good idea.
Having the right type of insurance in place will increase the chances that you’ll have coverage when you need it.
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FAQs

How much does a tail light cost?

If you don't have insurance, replacing a tail light cover can be pricey. It depends on your car, but you could be paying up to $700. If you have solid, comprehensive insurance, though, that cost could be lower.

Are tail lights covered under my warranty?

It depends on how comprehensive your warranty is! Most new car warranties last at least 12 months, so you will probably be covered if you're driving a new car. If you're beyond that period, check in with your insurer to see what kind of coverage you have.

Getting insurance for headlights and tail lights

If you want to maximize your chances that headlight and tail light damage will be covered by your
car insurance
, taking out a full comprehensive and collision policy is the best way to do it.
No matter what type of insurance you’re looking for, if you want to save money, the
Jerry
app is a good place to start. As a licensed broker, Jerry does all the hard work of finding the cheapest quotes from the top name-brand insurance companies and finalizing your new car insurance. Jerry will even cancel your old policy for you!
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