Steps to Take With Auto Insurance When Moving to a New State
Last Updated on May 7, 2021
You’re finally packing up those cold winters and moving to a sun-drenched state. Or perhaps you’re giving up the sun and sand in favor of a once-in-a-lifetime career opportunity across the country. Whatever your situation, you are packing up and moving to a new state.
Relocating to a new state brings waves of excitement, new challenges and opportunities, unfamiliar surroundings, different people, and, unfortunately, new auto insurance requirements.
It’s a well-known fact that updating auto insurance is towards the very bottom of most people’s to-do list when moving. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s not important. There are a few crucial things to keep in mind when moving to a new state and some steps to take to make sure you’re covered.
Below, we’ll go over the following steps to take with auto insurance when moving states:
- Make sure you’re covered during the move
- Notify your insurance company of your move
- Switch to a new insurance provider (if needed)
- Update your license and register your vehicle in your new state
Do I Have Insurance Coverage During the Move?
Yes, you have coverage nationwide under any standard auto insurance policy. This means that you can drive your car to your new location, even in a different state, and you’ll still be covered under your current policy.
Therefore, the first part of your move will be no different than taking a road trip. But you might want to double-check your coverages before you go. If you’re driving a long way, it would be a good idea to increase your liability limits, make sure your vehicle has both comprehensive and collision coverage, and even add roadside assistance.
If you’re renting a U-Haul or another type of moving truck, it’s also a good idea to make sure you’re covered for your trip.
Once You’ve Relocated, Notify Your Insurance Company
After you’ve arrived in your new state, you will have a giant checklist of things to do. Updating, and even switching, to a new auto insurance policy should be one of the very top things to do first. So go ahead and contact your insurance company as soon as you move.
The important thing to know is that insurance is regulated at the state level. This means that many insurance carriers do not have a license to operate in all 50 states, and all 50 states have slightly different requirements. So, while you can update your mailing address with your current company anywhere in the country, they might not actually be able to offer you a new policy that accurately reflects your needs or meets the state’s requirements.
This means that you will need to contact your insurance agent or call the company directly to find out if they can keep writing your auto insurance in the new state.
Maybe It’s Time for a New Insurance Provider
If your current provider doesn’t offer coverage in your new state, then it’s time to look around for a new insurance carrier. You could either seek out a local agent’s expertise or directly contact a nationwide insurance company to get a new auto policy.
It’s necessary to get a new auto policy started once you move. This is because each state has its own regulations and legal requirements, so what worked for one state might not work in another state. While remaining on your previous policy will work for a short-term or long-term visit, it won’t hold up if you move permanently.
The good news is that if you do switch to a new provider, most providers allow you to switch mid-policy without any cancellation fees. The bad news is that when you move to a new state, depending on the state’s regulations and insurance market conditions, your insurance rates might increase.
Update Your Driver’s License and Register Your Vehicle
Whether or not you switch insurance providers, you’ll need to get a new insurance policy written to meet the requirements and regulations of your new state.
Another reason that you’ll need to get a new policy started is that you will also have to get a new license plate and vehicle registration, which requires showing proof of insurance coverage. Out-of-state insurance, unfortunately, just won’t cut it in your new state.
Lastly, you will need to update your driver’s license with the state’s motor vehicle bureau. After you do this, don’t forget to update your insurance policy with your new driver’s license number. Most insurance carriers will give you a certain amount of time to do this, but it’s best to do this immediately so that you don’t forget about it over time.
Starting a New Chapter in Life
You know how busy life gets, and it’s even busier at the beginning of a move. So get these insurance changes, vehicle registrations, and licensing information all updated as soon as possible. You’ll be glad that something so important is done and out of the way.
Now that you’ve taken care of your new auto insurance, it’s time to start exploring your new state. It’s always a good feeling to be able to rest knowing that you’re safe and secure, especially in new and unfamiliar surroundings. The whole purpose of insurance is to provide that safety and security blanket, knowing that your most important assets are taken care of.
Final Word on How to Handle Auto Insurance When Moving States
Insurance never makes things simple, no matter how hard it tries. To simplify your move, here is a summary of what you need to do with your auto insurance coverage if moving to a new state:
- Check your current policy to fully prepare for the trip.
- Find out if your current insurance carrier writes policies in your new state.
- If yes, then start a new policy with them.
- If no, then find a new insurance carrier. Look around for a local agent or contact a big insurance company that does operate in your state.
- Update your driver’s license and vehicle registration with your new state’s bureau of motor vehicles.
- Be extra careful driving in your new surroundings and enjoy life in your new state!