Do You Need Separate Car Insurance Policies for the Same Car In Each State of Residence?

auto insurance policyIf you spend your time living in multiple states, you may have questions about your auto insurance policy. After all, if you spend several months in one state then relocate to another, the coverage you have in one state may not be applicable in another, or insurance companies might question why you are in a different state if an accident occurs. If this happens, you could find that insurance companies may be unwilling to cover you.

Furthermore, if you are pulled over while driving, the state you are in might refuse to honor the auto insurance you have as proof of coverage making it very important to understand the car insurance laws of each state in which you live and how your auto insurance policy is affected by your moves.

State Minimum Car Insurance Requirement

All states except New Hampshire require a minimum of auto liability or no-fault insurance, but the amount required differs from state to state. For example, Florida requires 10/20/10 state minimum car insurance; this means that you must have at least $10,000 in liability per person, $20,000 for all injuries, and $10,000 in property damage coverage. Florida is also a no-fault state, which means that you must have minimum no-fault coverage to pay for your own damages in a small accident and medical coverage for you and your passengers.

New York, on the other hand, requires 25/50/10, more than double the amount per person and per accident in liability. New York is also a no-fault state and their minimum personal injury protection is different than that of Florida.

As you can see, someone who spends their time living in both New York and Florida is faced with different auto insurance policy coverage issues in each state.

Auto Insurance Policy Coverage: What Happens if You’re Vacationing Out-Of-State?

If you are simply traveling through another state and do not have a residence there, most auto insurance policies are required to extend to the limits of that state’s coverage. This means that as a vacationer or a traveler for work, you have little to worry about as long as your state minimum car insurance requirements are met.

However, the situation is different if you actually have a residence and spend part of your year living in another state. In that case, you are usually required to meet that state’s minimum coverage requirements and follow all subsequent car insurance laws.

Meeting Requirements for Car Insurance Laws

If you spend any significant amount of time in a state, receive mail there, and pay taxes in that state, it is important that you meet the requirements of that state’s car insurance laws. The best way to do this is to talk with your insurance agent about your situation. Some companies that operate nationally will simply work out a surcharge on your premium so you are covered in all the states in which you reside. Others may ask you to buy an auto insurance policy for each state or for the state in which you spend the most time.

If you have coverage from different companies in the states in which you reside, be sure that you make your agent aware that you also have a residence in another state. This will help auto insurance companies determine a fair premium for the amount of time you spend in each state. Theoretically, you should only have to pay for the time you actually live in the state and pay a minimum fee to continue your coverage when you are not in residence in that location.

Some states will not allow you to register a car unless you have insurance coverage for that state. Therefore, if you do purchase a multi-state auto insurance policy, it is important that you understand how each state will view that policy and whether they will honor it. A call to your local DMV office will answer this question.

Insuring a car in multiple states need not be complicated. Talk to your insurance agent about your needs and be honest in how much time you spend in each state and you will most likely find that there is a policy designed to meet your particular state minimum car insurance requirements.

If you can’t get insurance remember you can always take a taxi to get from point A to point B. Stita Taxi provides excellent service and has extremely affordable rates.