What Happens to Car Insurance After Moving Out of State?

How do you handle your car insurance when you move out of state? Changing your insurance is only necessary when you have completed your move. You need to make sure your insurance from the prior state is acceptable in the new state. Generally, it is best to let your car insurance policy reach the renewal date before switching to the new car insurance. If not, you may incur cancellation fees and be without car insurance in the new state. Only cancel your prior car insurance after you have gotten the new insurance policy. Many incorrectly believe that if they move out of their state with its own laws, they can cancel their policy until they get a new residence. If you are one of those believers, you run the risk of receiving penalties and liabilities for having no car insurance.

When moving to a new state, your car insurance will continue to apply until the policy expires. The switch should only happen if the new state does not accept the old insurance policy. Just about every state requires some kind of liability insurance. This type of insurance protects other drivers from your negligence. Keeping insurance protects you while traveling if you get into an accident. If you have an accident in an at-fault state, then you can be sued for the losses of another person. If you have an accident in a no-fault state, you can receive hefty fines for driving without insurance. You can also receive both driver license and registration suspensions. How do you transfer car insurance to a new state?

First check to see if your car insurance policy is valid in the new state. That will depend on whether the insurance company is licensed to write insurance in that state. If not, letting the policy expire may avoid cancellation fees. If new insurance is needed, gather all your information to determine what type of insurance you will need. Shop around. Talk to your prior insurance agent to see if they know of anyone who might assist you. Use your new zipcode to help you with various quotes from insurance companies. Have your new car insurance policy start a couple of days before the old one expires. This will prevent a lapse in coverage. Then make sure the old policy is canceled and any refunds sent to your new address. What about snowbirds?

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As a general proposition, snow birds are considered temporary residents unless they exceed a certain time limit in the visiting state. For example. If your state has a 90 day limit, you may be required to get temporary car insurance to cover any exceeded time limit. That is usually rare and the car insurance you have should cover the stay.

Finding the best car insurance can be easy. Initially, an insurance company must be licensed to sell in the new state. You will need to use your new zip code to obtain insurance quotes. Using quote tools, will allow you to see all the competitive quotes in your area. Using these tools will save you money and allow you to find the best car insurance coverage.

About the Authors: Sawan & Sawan is a multi-generational, family owned law firm practicing law in the areas of car accidents, truck accidents, insurance claims, personal injury, litigation and more. Our firm practices law in Ohio (Toledo, Columbus), Georgia, Michigan and Florida


Dennis P. Sawan


Licensed in Ohio and Georgia


Christopher A. Sawan


Licensed in Ohio and Michigan

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