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How Marital Status Affects Auto Insurance Rates
How Marital Status Affects Car Insurance Rates
Marriage comes with a lot of important financial decisions, and one of the areas to consider with your spouse is your car insurance – many car insurance companies use marriage as a rating factor when determining your premium.
Learn how changing your marital status and adding or removing a driver from your policy can affect your rates.
Why Does Marriage Affect Car Insurance?
When determining your car insurance rates, auto insurance companies go by the numbers, meaning they base the driver's premium on their risk of making a claim/getting into an accident.
For example, drivers who are under 25 years old, those who have poor driving records, or drivers with high-risk occupations will pay more.
When it comes to marriage, someone who is married is LESS likely to be in an accident than someone who is not married.
While this may seem like a presumption that could possibly be discriminatory, accident statistics do back up this theory. In fact, in a 2004 study of 10,525 adults, the National Institutes of Health found that drivers who have never been married had twice the risk of driver injury than drivers who were married.
Combining Policies After Marriage
When you get married, consider the best way to handle your car insurance. Married couples often assume it's best to combine their policies. Understand, however, that combining policies doesn't automatically lead to savings.
The driving records of both you and your spouse will be factored into your new premium, so if your spouse has had a number of tickets or accidents, you could actually see your rates rise.
Additionally, it may be better to keep separate policies if your spouse:
- Drives a car model that is pricier to insure.
- Drives a valuable classic car.
- Travels many more miles per day/month than you.
If you have questions about how combining your policies can affect your rates, speak with your auto insurance agent.
Car Insurance, Domestic Partnerships, and Roommates
Some car insurance companies offer specific domestic partnership policies. These often have similar terms as policies for married couples, and the rates can decrease because of the lower chance of domestic partners being in accidents compared to singles.
Similarly, your rates are likely to decrease if your partner:
- Drives fewer miles than you.
- Has a driving record as good or better than yours.
- Has a car model that is not expensive to insure.
If you move in with roommates who will be driving your car, you will need to list all the licensed drivers in your household. This means your rates may increase due to the added number of drivers on your policy.
Note that you can choose to exclude drivers in your household.* Understand that by doing this, you are certifying that they won't drive your car. If they do, you may be liable for all injuries and property damage if that driver has an accident in your vehicle.
* Depending on your insurance company and your state, you might not be allowed to exclude drivers from your policy.
Multiple Vehicle Discounts
As you examine your options for auto insurance for couples, consider the possibility of multiple vehicle discounts if you have more than one car in your household.
A multivehicle discount can end up providing the same coverage and being less expensive than insuring each of the household's cars separately.
To receive this discount if your company offers it, all vehicles need to be insured with the same company and with the same policyholder's name.
Car Insurance Rates After Divorce
Your car insurance rates can change after divorce because of changes in your personal situation.
If you've recently gotten divorced, first be sure to remove your ex from your policy if you shared a policy under your name. Then, consider the circumstances in your life that have changed and that can affect your insurance rates.
Inform your insurance company of any relevant updates, such as the following.
- A change in address.
- A change in your financial situation.
- Changes in household members, such as children.
- Changes in mileage.
Talk to Your Car Insurance Agent
When you change your living situation by getting married or divorced, or even moving in with someone, it's smart to reevaluate your car insurance.
Your auto insurance agent should be able to walk you through how your life change can affect your premiums and whether it's in your best interest to combine your policies.
You can also explore an online quote to see how your policy may change.