Gap Insurance in Ohio (2024)

Gap insurance in Ohio can help you pay your loan if your vehicle is totaled or stolen and you owe more than your car is worth.

Jessica Martel
Written byJessica Martel
Jessica Martel
Jessica Martel

Jessica is a freelance writer, professional researcher, and mother of two rambunctious little boys. She specializes in personal finance, women and money, and financial literacy. Jessica is fascinated by the psychology of money and what drives people to make important financial decisions. She holds a Masters of Science degree in Cognitive Research Psychology.

Chris Schafer
Edited byChris Schafer
Chris Schafer
Chris SchaferSenior Editor
  • 15+ years in content creation

  • 7+ years in business and financial services content

Chris is a seasoned writer/editor with past experience across myriad industries, including insurance, SAS, finance, Medicare, logistics, marketing/advertising, and many more.

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Updated February 26, 2024 at 11:00 AM PST

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If your car is stolen or totaled in an accident, your insurance will pay you the actual cash value (ACV) of your car.[1] In some cases, this might not be enough to entirely pay off your car loan or lease. This is especially true if you owe more on your car than it’s worth.

This is where gap insurance comes in.

Quick Facts
  • Gap insurance is an optional type of auto coverage that’s often available when you purchase or lease a vehicle.

  • Gap insurance isn’t required by Ohio law.

  • Some gap insurance policies only cover you to a certain limit.

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What is gap insurance, and how does it work?

Gap insurance — also called “guaranteed auto protection” insurance — covers the difference between how much your insurance will pay on a specified claim and the remaining balance on your auto loan.

Gap insurance is generally used if your car is stolen or totaled. It’s an optional type of insurance that’s often available when you purchase a vehicle. If you’re leasing a vehicle, some lenders might require it.Gap insurance is not necessary for all drivers. However, you might consider purchasing gap insurance if you’re worried your insurance won’t cover your losses in the event your vehicle is deemed a total loss. You may also purchase gap insurance if you’d have trouble paying for this gap yourself.

Good to Know

Gap insurance is not necessary for all drivers. However, you might consider purchasing gap insurance if you’re worried your insurance won’t cover your losses in the event your vehicle is deemed a total loss. You may also purchase gap insurance if you’d have trouble paying for this gap yourself.

What gap insurance covers in Ohio

Gap insurance provides coverage if your car is stolen or totaled and you still have a balance on your loan. It prevents you from having to continue making car payments after your car is gone.

However, gap insurance won’t cover vehicle repairs after an accident unless your insurance company states your vehicle is totaled. It also doesn’t provide coverage for things such as normal wear and tear, mechanical breakdowns, or medical bills if you’re injured in an accident.

When you file a claim, your comprehensive or collision coverage will cover the cash value of your vehicle, minus your deductible. If you’ve purchased gap insurance as an add-on to your policy, it’ll contribute to the amount that’s withstanding on your loan or lease.

But remember that gap insurance only covers the amount remaining on your loan once your insurance company has paid out and you’ve covered your deductible. Some gap insurance policies will only cover you up to a certain limit, so make sure you understand your coverage before purchasing a policy.

For Example

If you owe $20,000 on your car loan and your vehicle has an actual cash value of $15,000, your insurance company will pay the ACV, minus your deductible. If your deductible is $1,000, your insurance company will pay $14,000. This leaves you with a $6,000 gap. If you have gap insurance, your policy will cover this $6,000.

Gap insurance vs. full coverage

Full-coverage car insurance in Ohio includes collision and comprehensive coverage. Collision insurance reimburses you for damages if you get in an accident with another car or object. Comprehensive coverage protects you from events like theft, flood, or vandalism.

Gap insurance isn’t included as part of a full-coverage plan. Instead, you can purchase it as an add-on. Gap insurance functions similarly to other optional policies such as roadside assistance or accident forgiveness insurance. If you want to ensure you cover the difference between what you owe on your car loan and the value of your car if it’s totaled, gap insurance might be a useful purchase.

Who needs gap insurance in Ohio?

In Ohio, the minimum requirements for liability insurance include:

  • $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident for bodily injury

  • $25,000 per accident for property damage[2]

Ohio law doesn’t require you to have gap insurance. Instead, it’s an optional form of insurance that you can purchase if you want to. Many lenders will offer gap insurance coverage when you purchase or lease a vehicle. Some may even require it.

However, just because gap insurance isn’t a requirement doesn’t mean you shouldn’t seriously consider it in specific situations.

For example, when you purchase or lease a new car, it starts to depreciate the minute you drive it off the car dealership lot. Within the first year, most cars lose 20% of their value. Within five years, cars can depreciate by 60%. If you’re leasing or financing your vehicle, there’s a chance you’ll owe more than the cash value of your vehicle.

You might benefit from a gap insurance policy if:

  • You have a new loan term that has a long payoff period (60 months or longer).[3]

  • You’re leasing a vehicle, and the lender requires gap insurance.

  • You put down a small down payment (less than 20%) on a large car loan.

  • You’ve purchased a luxury vehicle or a vehicle that tends to depreciate quickly.

  • You’ve rolled over negative equity from a previous car loan into a new loan.

  • You’ve put on a lot of miles, which can increase the rate of vehicle depreciation.

If you made a large down payment on your car or plan to pay it off within a short period of time, gap insurance may not make sense for you. Similarly, if you purchase a used car, you probably don’t need gap insurance, unless you finance the vehicle.

If you’re considering gap insurance, consult an insurance agent or a lender to get an expert quote.

How to buy gap insurance in Ohio

When buying a new vehicle, the dealer may offer gap insurance. You can also purchase it from most car insurers — typically for less than you’ll pay with a dealer. While it’s possible to purchase gap insurance as a stand-alone policy, many insurers offer it as an add-on to your existing policy.

If you’re trying to keep your monthly auto insurance premiums to a minimum, you might not consider gap insurance. However, adding gap insurance to a collision and comprehensive policy only increases your annual premium by about $20, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III).[3]

The price of gap insurance goes up if you purchase it as an add-on to your car loan. You can expect to pay a one-time flat fee instead of yearly payments, which can range from $500 to $700.

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Best gap insurance companies in Ohio

Here are some of the top gap insurance companies in Ohio.

Auto-Owners

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IQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
4.1
JD Power
J.D. Power data measures overall customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction based on a 1,000-point scale.
837
Liability Only
Liability-only insurance, sometimes called minimum-coverage insurance, pays for bodily injury and property damage to others in an accident the policyholder causes. It does not pay for the insured’s own damages.
$46/mo
Full Coverage
Full-coverage car insurance generally includes liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, and may include other optional coverages such as uninsured motorist coverage. Collision covers a policyholder’s repair or replacement costs in case of an accident. Comprehensive covers damages caused by non-accident events. The average quote displayed here reflects policies with the following coverage limits: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person; $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident; $50,00 property damage liability per accident; $1,000 collision deductible; and a $1,000 comprehensive deductible.
$84/mo

Auto-Owners offers a variety of full-range auto insurance services with competitive premiums. The company also has several additional insurance coverage options, including loan gap or lease gap coverage.

Pros
  • High customer satisfaction

  • Multiple discounts

Cons

I was pleased with the agent and for years the price, but now they have gotten too expensive for a person on a fixed income.

Mary - August 13, 2023
Verified

I was dropped because of two minor at-fault accidents in two plus years.

Zachary - January 8, 2023
Verified

You can work directly with an agent.

Guy - May 17, 2022
Verified
Read our Auto-Owners review

Midvale Home & Auto

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IQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
3.2
A.M. Best
A.M. Best analyzes an insurer’s financials, operating performance, business profile, and other factors to generate an opinion-based rating of a company’s financial and credit strength. Ratings range from A++ (exceptional) to D (poor).
A
Liability Only
Liability-only insurance, sometimes called minimum-coverage insurance, pays for bodily injury and property damage to others in an accident the policyholder causes. It does not pay for the insured’s own damages.
$57/mo
Full Coverage
Full-coverage car insurance generally includes liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, and may include other optional coverages such as uninsured motorist coverage. Collision covers a policyholder’s repair or replacement costs in case of an accident. Comprehensive covers damages caused by non-accident events. The average quote displayed here reflects policies with the following coverage limits: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person; $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident; $50,00 property damage liability per accident; $1,000 collision deductible; and a $1,000 comprehensive deductible.
$98/mo

You can purchase gap insurance at a reasonable rate from Midvale Home & Auto. Whether you’re leasing your vehicle or have a loan, gap insurance can help you pay the difference if your vehicle is totaled.

Pros
  • Backed by the financial strength of American Family

  • Optional gap insurance and roadside assistance available

Cons
  • Can’t get a quote online – must call an agent

  • Poor customer reviews with Better Business Bureau

Liberty Mutual

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IQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
3.8
JD Power
J.D. Power data measures overall customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction based on a 1,000-point scale.
819
Liability Only
Liability-only insurance, sometimes called minimum-coverage insurance, pays for bodily injury and property damage to others in an accident the policyholder causes. It does not pay for the insured’s own damages.
$73/mo
Full Coverage
Full-coverage car insurance generally includes liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, and may include other optional coverages such as uninsured motorist coverage. Collision covers a policyholder’s repair or replacement costs in case of an accident. Comprehensive covers damages caused by non-accident events. The average quote displayed here reflects policies with the following coverage limits: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person; $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident; $50,00 property damage liability per accident; $1,000 collision deductible; and a $1,000 comprehensive deductible.
$134/mo

Liberty Mutual has a range of car insurance options, including low-cost gap coverage. The exact cost of gap insurance will vary based on the type of vehicle, your claim history, and the actual cost value of your car.

Pros
  • Wide range of available discounts

  • Accident forgiveness available

Cons
  • Many negative reviews and customer complaints

  • Premiums are relatively high compared to industry average

The only thing is pricing and checking with other carriers for pricing!!! Liberty Mutual has all of them beat.

William - December 1, 2023
Verified

Wasn't consistent with price from year one to year two.

Lester - November 30, 2023
Verified

Best service there is.

H - November 27, 2023
Verified
Read our Liberty Mutual review

How Insurify rates car insurance companies

Data scientists at Insurify analyzed more than 40 million real-time auto insurance rates from our partner providers across the United States to compile the car insurance quotes, statistics, and data visualizations displayed on this page. The car insurance data includes coverage analysis and details on drivers’ vehicles, driving records, and demographic information.

Quotes for Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, State Farm, and USAA are estimates based on Quadrant Information Services’ database of auto insurance rates. With these insights, Insurify is able to offer drivers insight into how companies price their car insurance premiums. The data included on this page represent averages across driver ages, genders, credit scores, and driver profiles for Ohio drivers.

Gap insurance in Ohio FAQs

Have questions about gap insurance in Ohio? Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

  • Does Ohio require gap insurance?

    No. Gap insurance isn’t a requirement in Ohio. Ohio law only requires drivers to have minimum liability coverage. However, some lenders might require you to purchase gap insurance if you have a lease or car loan.

  • What is the purpose of gap insurance?

    The purpose of gap insurance is to cover the “gap” between what you owe on your vehicle and the actual cash value if it’s stolen or totaled.

    Your standard auto insurance might only cover the current market value, which could be less than the amount you owe on your car. Gap insurance can help to ensure that you don’t have to pay out of pocket if you owe more than what your insurance will cover.

  • What are the pros and cons of gap insurance?

    The main positive of purchasing gap insurance is that it covers the insurance gap when you owe more than the actual cash value of your vehicle. This can provide you with peace of mind. There’s also no deductible to pay with gap insurance. The major con of gap insurance is it’s an additional monthly expense you have to pay.

  • Is gap insurance actually worth it?

    If you’re in a position where you owe more on your car than its cash value, gap insurance might be worth it for you. Ask yourself, if your car is stolen or totaled in an accident, do you have the money to cover the gap between what your insurance company will pay and what you still owe?

Sources

  1. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "What is Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP) insurance?." Accessed November 14, 2023
  2. Ohio Department of Insurance. "Guide to Automobile Insurance." Accessed November 14, 2023
  3. Insurance Information Institute. "What is gap insurance?." Accessed November 14, 2023
Jessica Martel
Jessica Martel

Jessica is a freelance writer, professional researcher, and mother of two rambunctious little boys. She specializes in personal finance, women and money, and financial literacy. Jessica is fascinated by the psychology of money and what drives people to make important financial decisions. She holds a Masters of Science degree in Cognitive Research Psychology.

Chris Schafer
Edited byChris SchaferSenior Editor
Chris Schafer
Chris SchaferSenior Editor
  • 15+ years in content creation

  • 7+ years in business and financial services content

Chris is a seasoned writer/editor with past experience across myriad industries, including insurance, SAS, finance, Medicare, logistics, marketing/advertising, and many more.

Featured in

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