Law enforcement will be looking for insurance policies

Traffic legal protection

Armed for disputes in traffic

Henriette Neubert
Expert for insurance as of February 8, 2017

Henriette Neubert

Henriette Neubert writes about insurance topics in the Finanztip editorial team. She has already worked in various online editorial teams and, at the same time, completed part-time training as a business journalist. She studied economics and business administration at the University of Leipzig and gained her first practical experience in Zurich and Dublin after completing her studies.

  • Traffic legal protection insurance is a useful addition to motor vehicle liability insurance for frequent drivers.
  • You can take out the policy individually or in combination with other legal protection modules.
  • Traffic legal protection protects you if you want to enforce your rights with a lawyer or in court after an accident. You are also covered in the event of problems relating to the purchase of the car.
  • The tariffs differ depending on which people and how many vehicles are insured. In the case of family tariffs, relatives are also insured, including on a bicycle or as a pedestrian.
  • You can find general information on the subject of legal protection in our legal protection insurance guide.
  • Our main recommendation is the Deurag. According to Stiftung Warentest (“Finanztest” 2/2016), it offers very good services and is still very cheap. In some cases it is even cheaper.
  • For families with a vehicle, Finanztip recommends Premium traffic legal protection from Arag for around 112 euros per year. You are also well advised with Deurag traffic legal protection (tariff SB 150).
  • For families with several vehicles, Deurag (tariff SB 150) offers very good traffic legal protection insurance for 113 euros per year. DEVK (Extended Traffic Legal Protection Premium) is also recommended.
  • For singles with a vehicle, we also recommend the Deurag (tariff SB 150) for 80 euros a year. Allrecht / Deurag (individual transport legal protection) offers even better services for just under two euros more per year.

Anyone who drives to work every day knows such situations all too well: The vehicle in front brakes abruptly, there is hardly any time to react - it almost crashed. If there is actually an accident and a dispute about the question of guilt, the driver is often the more relaxed, the one Traffic legal protection-Has insurance.

A survey by the statistics portal Statista shows that in 2016 almost 20 million people in Germany were covered by such legal protection insurance. But this insurance is at all necessary and useful? And which tariffs are suitable for whom?

Who should have traffic legal protection insurance

After an accident, your car insurance usually pays court and lawyer fees, provided that claims for damages by the other party in the accident are to be fought off. If you have your own claims for damages and compensation for pain and suffering, or if the question of guilt has not been clarified, traffic legal protection insurance comes into play. It helps you to enforce your rights in court if necessary. Because even if the person who caused the accident has to pay all legal and court costs, you as the plaintiff have to advance this first - and that can be expensive without legal protection insurance.

That is why: People who cover a long distance by car every day and want to be comprehensively covered should have traffic legal protection insurance. Protection can also be achieved with general legal protection insurance, but at a significantly higher price. Those who do not fear legal trouble in other areas of life can be satisfied with the small version of traffic legal protection.

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That is what traffic legal protection insurance offers

Traffic legal protection insurance protects you in many legal areas relating to road traffic. Basically, you are insured with your vehicles, all drivers and passengers are also protected. Insurance cover also exists if you are the driver of a third-party vehicle, such as a rental car. The insurance also helps in the event of a dispute after buying a car or after an accident if you were a pedestrian or cyclist.

If a dispute ends up in court, the insurance company pays its own and the opposing lawyer, the court costs and the cost of an expert. But it does not cover the cost of all legal disputes.

What traffic legal protection covers

secured legal issuesCosts that the insurance pays
Compensation rightAttorney, court and appraisal costs in the event of your own claims for damages or compensation for pain and suffering after a traffic accident. This also applies if you use public transport as a cyclist, pedestrian or passenger.
Criminal lawThe costs for your defense lawyer, for example, if you are investigated for allegedly escaping an accident or negligent bodily harm caused by an accident or for insulting another road user.
Contract and property lawLegal fees and court costs, for example if you have trouble buying a new or used car, for example because of manipulated emissions software. A dispute with the auto repair shop is also covered, as well as legal disputes relating to the financing of a car with a car loan.
Tax lawLegal disputes over vehicle tax. Legal representation vis-à-vis the tax authorities is not insured unless the insurer expressly includes them.
Administrative lawThe costs of a procedure in the event of trouble with an authority, for example because your driver's license was temporarily withdrawn or you cannot get it again after the blocking period has expired. Or if you should keep a logbook.
Administrative offensesLegal and court costs if you want to defend yourself against a fine.

Source: Finanztip research (as of 2017)

Then traffic legal protection will not help

not coveredExamples
Defense against claims for damagesLegal disputes in which you defend yourself against claims for damages after an accident. This covers your own motor vehicle liability. It also covers personal injury, property damage or financial loss that you have caused to other people involved in the accident.
intentional offensesCriminal proceedings that deal with deliberate acts, for example illegal car races, coercion due to driving too hard or drunkenness in traffic (Section 316 StGB).1
Penalties and FinesDriving too fast at 30 km / h within a town costs 100 euros; if you don't buckle up, you risk 30 euros. Mobile phone at the wheel costs 60 euros.

1However, some insurers also offer so-called special criminal legal protection. In this case, the insurance always comes first, but reclaims all costs incurred if the court determines that the insured acted willfully.
Source: Finanztip research (as of 2017)

What is important in traffic legal protection

There are a few things that are important when choosing a traffic legal protection insurance and that we paid special attention to in our tariff recommendations.

Sum insured - This is the maximum amount that the insurer will pay. There are significant differences between the individual providers when it comes to the amounts covered. Policies with coverage of EUR 300,000 are widespread, but some insurers also reimburse costs of up to EUR 500,000 or even EUR 1 to 2 million. However, these high insured sums make the premiums for the policy more expensive. The General Association of the German Insurance Industry (GDV) recommends coverage of at least 500,000 euros, criminal prosecution abroad should be insured up to an amount of 100,000 euros. The tariffs we recommend all offer unlimited coverage.

Worldwide protection - Traffic legal protection insurance is usually also valid in other European countries, in EU member states and countries bordering the Mediterranean. Some policies are valid worldwide, but mostly only for a limited period of time. So if you work abroad for a while and want to take your car with you, you should pay attention to how long the protection applies abroad. Some insurers offer worldwide protection for twelve months. However, the amount of cover for disputes abroad is usually lower than in Germany. All tariffs recommended by us offer at least a worldwide coverage of 100,000 euros.

Deductible (SB) - Many insurers offer a reduced premium if the customer chooses a deductible. It can be between 150 euros and 500 euros per insured event. There are also insurers where the deductible drops if the insured has not made a claim for a certain number of years.

Pay attention to a low deductible or choose a policy with no deductible at all, so that it is worthwhile to seek legal advice for supposedly minor damage. Finanztip recommends a deductible of 150 euros per insured event. Attention: the lower the excess, the higher the price of the insurance. There are providers where you don't have to pay anything yourself if your case has already been settled after the initial legal consultation. But that should rarely be the case.

Legal services -Sometimes legal advice over the phone is sufficient. Your traffic legal protection insurance should also offer this. As an additional service, all tariffs that we recommend offer you legal advice over the phone.

Waiting period - In contrast to most other insurance companies, there is usually no waiting period of three months with traffic legal protection before you can claim benefits. So you can see a lawyer immediately after taking out a new course. However, some services such as protection in contract and property law can only be provided after a contract period of three months. Take a close look at the insurance conditions under the point "Temporary exclusions". The tariffs that we recommend do not include a waiting period in their insurance conditions.

Termination by the insurer - The insurer can usually cancel the legal protection if you submit two insurance claims within one year. You can read how your insurance does this in the general insurance conditions under the point "Cancellation after an insured event". The tariffs recommended by us all stipulate that the insurer can cancel after two insured events per year.

Our main recommendation is the Deurag

How much traffic legal protection insurance costs depends on a number of factors. In addition to the amount of coverage, the scope of benefits, the amount of the deductible and the number of people and vehicles included are decisive for calculating the insurance premium. In January 2017 we compared the tariffs of traffic legal protection insurances, the conditions of which the Stiftung Warentest (“Finanztest” magazine, issue 2/2016) rated as very good. You can find details about our approach at the end of the text.

The tariffs in traffic legal protection differentiate between family and individual tariffs. Our main recommendation for everyone is Deurag (Deutsche Rechtsschutz-Versicherung AG) based in Wiesbaden. It offers very good insurance cover for families with one vehicle, families with several vehicles and singles. Among the insurance tariffs rated as very good by Stiftung Warentest, it delivers the cheapest or second cheapest offer in our comparison.

The insurance can be conveniently taken out online. Customers are also insured as drivers and passengers of third-party vehicles, as passengers, pedestrians or cyclists. Life partners and children are also insured under the family tariffs, even if they are older than 18 years and still live at home.

Deurag (traffic legal protection)
particularly cheap among the very good insurers
  • Grade very good (1.4 according to "Finanztest", edition 02/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • no waiting
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 80 € per year for singles with one vehicle
  • 113 € per year for families with one or more vehicles
Can only be locked with the provider

Very good traffic legal protection for families

In the case of family tariffs, unlike single tariffs, not only the policyholder, but also the life partner and children are also insured. This should not only apply if you drive yourself, but also if you are traveling with you or are cycling, pedestrians or using public transport. It was also important to us that children of legal age continue to be insured if they still live in the house. We made a distinction between families with only one car and families with several vehicles.

Family with a vehicle

When choosing a tariff, families with a vehicle must ensure that all family members are insured and not just that only one vehicle is protected. With some providers, a family must therefore choose the tariff with several vehicles, as otherwise there is no protection for spouses and children in all situations. We paid special attention to this in our recommendations.

Of the very good insurance tariffs for families with a vehicle according to Stiftung Warentest, we recommend the cheapest and second-cheapest provider: Arag with the premium traffic legal protection tariff and Deurag with the traffic legal protection tariff for the self-employed (21 ARB). You can conclude the policies conveniently online with both insurers.

  • Very good grade (1.5 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 112 € per year for families with one vehicle (SB: 150 €)
Deurag (traffic legal protection, § 21 (11) ARB)
for families with one vehicle
  • Very good grade (1.4 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Adult children are also covered
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 113 € per year for families with one vehicle (SB: 150 €)
Can only be locked with the provider

Family with multiple vehicles

If you want to protect yourself as a family with several cars, you don't necessarily pay more. Of the very good traffic legal protection tariffs that Stiftung Warentest has found, we recommend the cheapest and second cheapest. We have always assumed a deductible (SB) of 150 euros. Deurag offers a very good tariff and is the cheapest among the very good ones. DEVK is only marginally expensive with the tariff "extended traffic legal protection premium".

Deurag (traffic legal protection, § 21 (11) ARB)
for families with several vehicles
  • Very good grade (1.4 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Adult children are also covered
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 113 € per year for families with several vehicles (SB: 150 €)
Can only be locked with the provider
DEVK (advanced traffic legal protection premium)
for families with several vehicles
  • Very good grade (1.5 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 116 € per year for families with several vehicles (SB: 150 €)
Can only be locked with the provider

Very good traffic legal protection for singles

Since no other people have to be insured with a single, the prices are a lot cheaper. We recommend the Deurag with very good services at a price of 80 euros per year with a deductible of 150 euros.

Allrecht / Deurag is even better when it comes to services. Allrecht, based in Düsseldorf, is a branch of Deurag Deutsche Rechtsschutz-Versicherung AG, which offers its own products under the Allrecht brand. The policy offers social legal protection in opposition proceedings, while Deurag only pays the legal fees after the legal proceedings. In the event of a legal case outside of Europe, the coverage amount is 100,000 euros higher. In addition, she waives the deductible if the matter has been settled through initial legal advice. It is only slightly more expensive than the Deurag.

Deurag (traffic legal protection, 21 (12) ARB)
the cheapest among the very good tariffs
  • Very good grade (1.4 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • 80 € per year (SB: 150 €)
Can only be locked with the provider
Allrecht / Deurag (individual legal protection for traffic)
the second cheapest among the very good tariffs
  • Very good grade (0.9 according to "Finanztest", issue 2/2016)
  • excellent insurance conditions
  • Immediate online purchase possible
  • € 81.84 per year (SB: € 150)
Can only be locked with the provider

What does ADAC legal protection offer?

With more than 2.4 million legal expenses insurance policies, the automobile club ADAC is one of the largest providers of traffic legal expenses insurance in Germany. The ADAC legal protection services are good. In addition to traffic law, you are also covered for travel and recreational sports for just under 70 euros a year. If you are already a member of the automobile club, the offer is worth considering.

If you are not in the ADAC, the bottom line is that the insurance is too expensive. Because the additional annual club membership fee for adults over 23 years of age is between 49 euros and 134 euros, depending on marital status and scope.

That's how we tested

Traffic legal protection test 2017

In January 2017, we examined the tariffs of pure traffic legal protection insurance. We have not included legal protection insurers who only offer traffic legal protection as an additional component to, for example, private legal protection. In its magazine “Finanztest” (issue 2/2016), the Stiftung Warentest published a comprehensive study of pure traffic legal protection insurance and their insurance conditions. Ten insurance tariffs were rated “very good”. We only took a closer look at these tariffs. In doing so, we excluded the insurers who now only offer traffic legal protection as a combination with other legal protection modules, as well as the insurance companies that do not allow online purchase. Of the ten "very good" tariffs, taking these criteria into account, the tariffs of six providers remained, which we examined further:

  • Allrecht / Deurag
  • Arag
  • Auxilia
  • DAS / Ergo
  • Deurag
  • DEVK

We asked these providers for three sample profiles online for prices: for a family with one vehicle, for a family with several vehicles and for a single with one vehicle. For our price query, we assumed a 40-year-old consumer who works as an employee - and not in the public sector. He has neither previous insurance nor previous damage.

We always asked for the annual premium, with a deductible of 150 euros and a contract term of one year. One provider only offered a tariff with a deductible of 300 euros, but this is reduced to 150 euros if the policyholder engages a lawyer recommended by the insurer. This tariff did not meet our criteria and therefore we did not consider it any further.

That left five providers with very good services, from whom we asked about the tariffs for the corresponding sample profiles. We recommend the cheapest and second cheapest of these very good tariffs. The overall results summarized:

Overview of the tested tariffs

 All right /
Deurag
THE/
Ergo
DeuragAragDEVK
Assessment Stiftung Warentest ("Finanztest", 2/2016)very good (0.9)very good (1.3)very good (1.4)very good (1.5)very good (1.5)
Family with a vehicleTariff: Flat rate legal protection for transport (§ 21 1.)Tariff: Premium legal protection family transportTariff: Traffic legal protection for the self-employed (21 ARB)Tariff: Active legal protection traffic premium (§ 21 p)Tariff:
Extended traffic legal protection premium
Price inquiry 23.1.2017122,76 €162,65 €113,00 €112,38 €116,10 €
Family with multiple vehiclesTariff: Flat rate legal protection for transport (§ 21 1.)Tariff: Premium legal protection family transportTariff: Traffic legal protection for the self-employed (21 ARB)Tariff: Active legal protection traffic premium (§ 21 p)Tariff:
Extended traffic legal protection premium
Price inquiry 23.1.2017122,76 €162,65 €113,00 €151,56 €116,10 €
Single with a vehicleTariff: Individual legal protection for traffic (§ 21)Tariff: Premium legal protection single trafficTariff: Traffic legal protection for the self-employed (21 ARB)Tariff: Active legal protection traffic premium (§ 21 p)Tariff:
Extended traffic legal protection premium
Price inquiry 23.1.201781,84 €84,93 €80,00 €95,52 €116,10 €

Source: "Finanztest" magazine (edition 2/2016), Finanztip research (as of January 23, 2017)

More on this in the legal protection insurance guide

  • You can get good legal protection for less than 300 euros a year.
  • Tariffs recommended by us: Arag Aktiv Komfort, Auxilia Jurprivat, WGV Optimal

To the advisor

Dr. Britta Beate Schön

Dr. Britta Beate Schön

Britta Beate Schön is responsible for all legal issues at Finanztip. The doctor of law and attorney was head of the legal department at financial service providers such as Telis Finanz AG and Interhyp. Before that, she taught and researched in Japan as a DAAD junior professor for German and European law. She completed her studies in Münster, Geneva, Regensburg and Leipzig. You can reach the author at [email protected]

* What the star means:

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