When you sign up for an auto insurance policy, you will receive a card in the mail from your insurance company. You’re supposed to keep it in the glove box of your car as proof of insurance. However, it’s easy to forget about your insurance card and misplace it. Here’s what you need to know about insurance cards and how to replace yours if you lose it.
How can I get a new insurance card?
Luckily, it is very easy to get a new insurance card if you lose yours. All you have to do is call your insurance company’s customer service line and ask the representative to mail you a new one. Some companies will allow you to submit this request online, but it’s often easier to do over the phone. Your insurance company will quickly send you a new one – usually, it will come in the mail, but some companies also have the option to fax or email it to you, and then have you print it out yourself. Keep in mind that some companies charge for replacement insurance cards. Luckily, this is usually a minimal fee of just a few dollars. You won’t have to worry about substantial replacement charges when if you lose your card.
What information is on your insurance card?
There’s key information about your policy on your insurance card, which is why insurance companies recommend that you keep it with you when you drive, just in case. They differ from state to state and differ by the company too. However, they all contain roughly the same information. The card usually has the policy number, the make, model, year, and VIN of your car, the amount of liability coverage you carry, and most importantly, what to do in the event of an accident. When you get pulled over by the police or if you get into an accident, you may be asked for your insurance card.
What should you do if you are asked for your insurance card, but don’t have it?
There are a few instances where you might be asked for your insurance card. The first is if you are pulled over by a police officer. If you have a digital copy of your insurance card saved on your phone, show them that first. This is becoming standard practice and is legal in some states, but not all. It’s best practice to keep a digital copy of your insurance card on your phone, a hard copy in your glove compartment, and another copy at home.
If you don’t have a digital copy, you may be able to get the police officer to let you go if you log into your insurance company’s online portal on your phone and show them your insurance information. This isn’t always going to work, but it can get you out of trouble in a pinch. If you have a confirmation letter from the insurance company accepting your policy, you can also try showing the officer that instead. This will prove to them that you have insurance until you can get home and get the card.
The other instance in which you might be asked for your insurance card is if you get into an accident and the other party wants to take down your insurance information. In this case, showing them a digital copy or getting your information off of your insurance company’s online portal should be more than sufficient. If you cannot do either of those things directly following the accident, giving them other party your name, a reliable way to contact you, and any details about your insurance that you remember can be helpful and reassuring for them.
Why You Should Always Be Careful With Your Insurance Card
If you get pulled over and you don’t have your insurance card, you could be subject to a higher ticket or even unnecessary court proceedings that you could avoid by having your insurance card with you. Insurance cards are easy to forget about when you don’t need them, but when you do need them, you’ll be very glad you hung onto yours. When you get your insurance card in the mail, make multiple copies of it. If your insurance company sends you a digital card, save it to both your phone and computer. The more proactive you are, the less likely you will be to encounter an uncomfortable situation later on.
If you do lose your insurance card, don’t stress out about it. It’s very easy to replace one, and it’s actually very common for people to lose theirs as well. Insurance companies have procedures in place that make it very easy to replace your card, and you shouldn’t have to wait too long for it to arrive.