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What are the different categories of car insurance?

Compulsory insurance (called the third party)

Compulsory insurance (Article L. 211-1 of the Insurance Code) called “third-party” consists of the cover of your civil liability and that of any person driving or parking your vehicle. This means that the insurance covers the damage that you or others could cause with your vehicle to other persons (third parties) as well as their vehicle or any other property.

This insurance does not cover your own bodily injury or damage to your vehicle, which is your responsibility if you are responsible for the accident. If a third party is liable, this damage will be covered by his insurance.

Nevertheless, you can opt for management of the physical and material damages that you could undergo in the event of an accident of which you would be responsible by opting for insurance all risks.

All risks insurance

This type of contract guarantees all the damage cases whether you are responsible or not and that the responsible person is identified or not. Legally, this type of contract is called “multi-risk”.

You must, however, check the warranties, the deductibles and the exclusion clauses of this type of contract before you commit.


As soon as you opt for insurance against all risks, you are obligatorily insured against the risks of natural disasters (article L. 125-1 of the insurance code) and attacks (article L. 126-2 of the insurance code). In other words, damage to your vehicle due to a natural disaster or an attack is obligatorily covered by the contract.

Optional guarantees

Depending on the damage you want to ensure, you have a panel of guarantees.

Guarantees of damage to the vehicle

The collision guarantee allows you to be compensated for damage sustained by your vehicle in an accident involving one or more other vehicles.

Theft or attempted theft (ie the deterioration of locks, starting or steering devices of the vehicle) are insurable; as well as the theft of the contents of the vehicle and / or its safe.

You can underwrite the vandalism guarantees, corresponding to the pure and simple degradation of the vehicle by others without the attempt of theft, fire, and explosion as well as breakage of ice.


These guarantees generally include deductibles, which means that in the event of a claim, part of the indemnity is retained by the insurer (Article L. 121-1 of the Insurance Code). The insurer generally offers several amounts of deductible and it’s up to you to choose the amount you want. The cost of insurance varies depending on the cost of the deductible, when the latter decreases, or even is at 0, the cost of insurance increases.

Other warranties may be offered to you, often in separate contracts, incidental to the damage warranties already subscribed. These guarantees are called affinity insurance. This is a deductible guarantee (the amount of the deductible applied in the event of a claim is refunded to you according to the conditions defined in the contract), mechanical breakdowns (the amount of the repair costs due to a mechanical breakdown is reimbursed to you or the service is operated at no cost according to the conditions defined in the contract) or engraving (the engraving of the vehicle is covered by the insurer according to the conditions defined in the contract).

Affinity insurance is generally subject to conditions for the use of fairly strict guarantees. It is advisable to be vigilant before concluding this type of contract and therefore to have read all the contractual conditions and specifically those related to compensation.

Driver’s insurance

Neither civil liability nor damage warranties cover the consequences of an accident on the driver himself. These consequences can be death, disability, physical or psychological sequelae. They are guaranteed by the personal insurance of the driver. This insurance can take two forms:

  1. the individual circulation guarantee, which provides for a fixed amount of compensation, that is to say, known from the moment of subscription of the contract (for example, a death benefit of € 100,000),
  2. the driver’s personal insurance coverage. Compensation is then calculated on a case-by-case basis depending on the severity of the injuries, the insured’s economic situation, etc.

The compensation

The insurance contract may include assistance services. The goal is not to repair the consequences of a disaster, but to help you immediately after the accident. This assistant plays in three complementary cases:

The insurance contract may include assistance services. The goal is not to repair the consequences of a disaster, but to help you immediately after the accident. This assistant plays in three complementary cases:

  • assistance related to the immobilization of the vehicle. It takes care, according to the conditions stipulated in the contract, the towing, the transport and the lodging of the driver and his passengers, the loan of a vehicle during the repairs, etc.
  • medical assistance in the event of an accident: sending an ambulance, taking care of the medical repatriation of the foreigner, etc.
  • death assistance: transport of the body, support of the cost of the funeral, psychological help, etc.

Legal protection or guarantee defense and recourse

The defense guarantee covers, for example, your defense when you are sued in a dispute related to your vehicle. The warranty recourse, meanwhile, allows you to take legal action when you are injured by a third party during an accident.

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