Rated “Best Auto Insurance Agency” in Yakima WA
At Yakima Valley Insurance we have many home insurance options. We work with several A-Rated Home Insurance Companies which allows us to shop for the best price and the best coverage for each customer’s unique situation.
Auto Insurance Agent
When looking for an insurance agent, the best place to start with is people you know. Ask friends and family for referrals to good local car insurance agents. The search for a good insurance agent is similar to searching for a good financial advisor or doctor, however make sure you understand what an auto insurance agent really is.
A few considerations when searching for a car insurance agent
- How many companies do they have access to provide offers from? If they can only offer one company, this means they are captive to that one auto insurance company. This also means they are just a sales person, not an adviser for you. Many times this is where people think they are saving money on auto insurance, but end up just buying less coverage.
- Are they required to provide a specific car insurance companies offer first. Some auto insurance companies require their agents to offer their product first even if it is not right for you.
- Is the agent trying to get to know you so they can match your needs with the coverage’s you are searching for
- Be aware of agents who simply want to give you the cheapest car insurance price.
- If the new car insurance is less expensive, ask them what is missing! In our experience, most people end up just buying less because something was either missing that you already had or the insurance agent cut coverage
Captive Insurance Companies
- Allstate Insurance
- American Family
- American National
- Country Financial
- Farmers Insurance
- State Farm Insurance
Captive Insurance Agents
Local Insurance Agents that work for the above companies are restricted by the company they work for. While they may act like they are providing choices, they can only offer you the one product from the insurance company they work for. While the car insurance seems like it may fit your needs, many times you can purchase a better product from a different company at the same or less money.
Auto Insurance Broker
An auto insurance broker is someone who does not have access to any one company but they can search the market for you. With this type of insurance professional, they will not have any authority with the auto insurance company you choose, so the service to you will be limited.
Independent Insurance Agents
The perfect balance of the two above, Independent Insurance Agents have authority with not one, but many different insurance companies. They are not forced to sell you something that doesn’t work for you. These guys and gals work hard to match your needs with affordable auto insurance that fits your budget.
Independent Auto Insurance Companies
- Allstate Insurance
- American Modern Insurance Group
- Berkshire Insurance
- Dairyland Insurance
- Foremost Insurance
- Grange Insurance
- Hartford Insurance
- Mutual of Enumclaw
- Nationwide Insurance
- National General Insurance
- Pemco Insurance
- Progressive Insurance
- Safeco Insurance
- Travelers Insurance
Direct Insurance Companies
A direct insurance company is one who skip using a local insurance agent altogether. The consumer can access a direct insurance company either by phone or online only. When purchasing from a direct insurance company often times price becomes the only factor in the purchasing decision. When price is the sole factor, the quality of the insurance policy will typically suffer. Often times consumers will be told they have purchased “full coverage” when in fact they have the minimum insurance required by their vehicles’s lienholder. Often time it is not until claim time that the insured realizes the misfortune of sacrificing their coverage for price.
Direct Insurance Companies
- Liberty Mutual
- USAA Insurance
Washington State Auto Insurance Requirements:
Vehicles registered in Washington
If you drive a vehicle that is required to be registered in Washington State, you must have one of the following: Auto Insurance, Self Insurance, Certificate of Deposit, Liability Bond
- The auto insurance policy must have limits of at least:
- $25,000 of bodily injury or death of 1 person in any 1 accident.
- $50,000 of bodily injury or death of any 2 people in any 1 accident.
- $10,000 of injury to or destruction of property of others in any 1 accident.
- Due to the litigious world we live in, Yakima Valley Insurance recommends the most liability insurance you can afford.
Required proof of auto insurance
Any time you drive in Washington, you must be prepared to show your auto insurance identification card to law enforcement. You will get this identification card from your auto insurance company when you buy a policy. The card must include all of the following:
- Name of the insurance company.
- Policy number.
- Effective date of the policy.
- Expiration date of the policy.
- Description of the year, make, or model of the insured vehicles, or the name of the insured driver. The word “fleet” may be used for more than 5 vehicles owned by the same person or business. Name of Insured Driver if it is a Broadform Policy
Failing to show this proof of insurance is a traffic infraction. Knowingly providing false evidence of coverage is a misdemeanor. Currently the fine is $450.00
Vehicles registered in another state
When you drive a vehicle in Washington that is required to be registered in another state, you must have the type of insurance required by that state. You must be able to provide proof of this insurance to law enforcement if requested.
You don’t need to have insurance when you operate a vehicle registered as any of the following:
- Horseless carriage over 40 years old
- State or publicly-owned vehicle.
- Common or contract carrier with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission.
Governor Jay Inslee signed into law replacement regulations on child restraint requirements effective January 1, 2020.
Supporters state this bill is about child safety. They say new parents do not typically know when a rear-facing car seat, a forward-facing car seat, or a booster seat is needed. This bill makes it very simple to understand: rear-facing until a child is 2 years old; forward-facing until a child is 4 years old; and a booster seat until a child is 4 feet 9 inches tall.
- Individuals who violate child restraint system laws may be issued a notice of traffic infraction. The fine for this traffic infraction is $136.
- If an individual has not previously had a violation of child restraint system laws dismissed, he or she may present proof of acquisition of an approved child restraint system or child booster seat, whichever is appropriate under the circumstances, within seven days to the jurisdiction that issued the notice.
- Child restraint violations will be included on individuals motor vehicle reports and can increase auto insurance rates in Washington State following a conviction.
Detailed Proper Usage:
- A child must be properly secured in a rear-facing child restraint system until the child is 2 years old or reaches the weight or height limit of the child restraint system set by the manufacturer. A child may continue to be properly secured in a rear-facing child restraint system until the child reaches the weight or height limits set by the manufacturer, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
- If a child under the age of 4 years is not secured in a rear-facing child restraint system, the child must be properly secured in a forward-facing child restraint system with a harness until the child is 4 years old or reaches the weight or height limits of the child restraint system set by the manufacturer. A child may continue to be properly secured in a forward-facing child restraint system with a harness until the child reaches the weight or height limits set by the manufacturer, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
- If a child under 4 feet 9 inches tall is not secured in a forward- or rear-facing child restraint system, the child must be properly secured in a child booster seat. The child booster seat must be used in accordance with vehicle and booster seat manufacturer instructions to position a child to sit properly in a federally approved safety seat belt system. A child may be properly secured in a child booster seat until the vehicle lap and shoulder seat belts fit properly, generally when the child is between the ages of 8 and 12 years old, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
- A child booster seat is not required for any seating position where there is only a lap belt available.
- A backless child restraint system and a belt-positioning system are considered child booster seats when they meet federal motor vehicle safety standards.
Source: HOUSE BILL REPORT SHB 1012