Monthly Archives: October 2017

Dropping your teen from your auto insurance policy

If your child is going to college, you might plan to offset those big tuition bills by dropping your teen from your auto insurance policy.

But that could be a risky way to save money. It’s no secret that having a young driver on your policy can be expensive.

In fact, adding a daughter can increase your rates by 50 percent while a son can hike them by 100 percent, according to Insure U, a public education program from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

But if your son or daughter regularly drives your car and is currently on your auto insurance policy, or if your looking for an auto insurance policy, it’s smart to keep it that way when a child is going to college, says Sonja Larkin-Thorne, a NAIC consumer representative.

First, your college student likely will visit home over holidays and during summer vacations. During breaks, he or she probably will want to drive to the store, visit friends and get to and from a summer job. Your auto insurance should reflect this reality.

ALSO: Should You Replace a Child’s Car Seat After a Crash?

Second, if you take your child off your policy when they are going to college but your home is still listed as his or her primary residence, then your auto insurer might require you to sign an exclusion stating that your child will not have access to or be allowed to drive your vehicles, Larkin-Thorne says.

A child going to college who’s excluded from your auto insurance policy won’t be permitted to drive your car even in case of emergency – for example, if you were driving, with your kid in the passenger seat, and you had a medical crisis.

“You couldn’t put your child behind the wheel even to drive you to the hospital,” she says.

 

Your child going to college will affect your auto insurance

If your child will move out of your home to attend college, whether across town or out of state, notify your auto insurance agent or insurer, says Carole Walker, executive director of the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association.

Discuss your specific situation, your concerns and all of your options when you have a child going to college. The effect on your policy will depend on a variety of factors, including where your child is going to college, the minimum liability insurance requirements of the state where the university is located and whether your child will take a car to school.

No matter what the situation, you may need to provide the agent or auto insurer with the address of the university and proof of your child going to college, Larkin-Thorne says.