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How to Change Car Insurance Companies

change car insurance companies

There are state laws requiring drivers to carry auto insurance, but no law mandating where or who you should get it from. This gives you a lot more freedom as an auto insurance customer, especially when your car insurance premiums with a vehicle insurance company you’ve been with rise to an amount that doesn’t fit your car insurance budget.

Taking a look at the auto insurance market and comparing vehicle insurance quotes, even when your current car insurance policy is active, never hurts. You want to have a backup plan if you choose not to renew your car insurance policy when the period is up and save some money on your vehicle insurance rates.

This post explains how you can change your car insurance company, when you can change your auto insurance company, and how to save money doing so.

When Should You Change Your Car Insurance Provider?

You don’t have to wait until your auto insurance policy is up for renewal in order to get another car insurance from other auto insurers. You can cancel your current vehicle insurance policy anytime as long as you notify your auto insurer with proof of your new car insurance.

Every car insurance policy typically renews every six months. Say that you found a better auto insurance provider after a hike in rates from your current car insurance company, but your vehicle insurance was just renewed last month. You don’t have to wait for your auto insurance policy to expire. What you can do is buy a new car insurance policy from another car insurance company and notify your old auto insurance provider that you have valid auto insurance coverage elsewhere.

Other reasons why you would want to switch auto insurance providers are if you’re moving to a zip code where your old auto insurer doesn’t operate, there are no more discounts you qualify for with your current car insurance company, you have your homeowners insurance or health insurance with another insurance provider and you want to bundle your insurance coverages, or you’ve just become unhappy with your auto insurer.

How do You Change Car Insurance?

Before changing car insurers, decide what new auto insurer you want to go with. Shopping for car insurance and comparing auto insurance quotes is a pivotal process in switching car insurance. You’ll want to get as many car insurance quotes as you can.

A good rule of thumb is to get a minimum of three car insurance quotes from both local and national auto insurers before switching car insurance. Every auto insurer prices their car insurance policy differently, and you want to find the best offer before changing car insurance on your vehicle.

Here’s how to switch your auto insurance policy when your existing car insurance isn’t up for renewal:

  • See if your old car insurance will charge a car insurance policy cancellation fee - You can ask your car insurance agent directly or review your car insurance policy to see if you will be charged anything for canceling your car insurance before renewal. Some new auto insurers may offer new-policyholder discounts that can cover these changing fees. If you feel what you’re being charged for changing car insurance is out of the question, you can wait until your current car insurance renewal period to change.
  • Have your new car insurance policy active - Before officially canceling your existing car insurance policy, you’ll want to pay for your new car insurance policy and have your car insurance ready to go with a start date and everything. This is to avoid lapses in your car insurance history which can negatively impact your car insurance rates, and your quest to save money can be dashed.
  • Get proof of new auto insurance - Your new auto insurer may mail you your new car insurance card and vehicle insurance policy information. If they don’t, then you can always print out a copy of your own from their website by logging in. This will be the proof of car insurance an officer will ask for if you are pulled over, so always keep it in your glove box after switching car insurance companies.
  • Officially cancel your old car insurance - With no risk of gaps in your car insurance coverage, you can now cancel your old auto insurance policy. All you need to do is simply contact your old auto insurer and notify your old car insurance company with the proof of your new car insurance after the change. The old car insurance company may have you fill out documentation, but it’s an overall easy process. You pay any auto insurance cancellation fee at this point.
  • Request a refund of already paid auto insurance rates - If you changed car insurance premiums before your old auto insurance policy was up for renewal, you might have some prepaid car insurance premiums on it. Your old auto insurer may do this without you asking for auto insurance premiums, but it never hurts to check with your car insurance company.

What Else Can a New Auto Insurer Offer You After Changing Your Current Auto Insurance?

The main reason you switched auto insurance providers is that you want better service as a car insurance policyholder, pay lower car insurance rates, and save money.

Several car insurance policyholders switch their car insurance over to the same insurance company that provides them other insurance to get a bundling discount and have lower premiums and rates. You may have the option to transfer perks you previously had on your other car insurance policy to your new one, like first-time accident forgiveness or a reduced deductible.

When Would You Shop For a New Car Insurance Policy?

You can always look at the latest on the car insurance policy market, but the time to truly do so is after a major life event like getting married or after your child gets their license. These are times when your car insurance policy will need some expansion.

You can look at new car insurance companies altogether or make an attempt to update your existing auto insurance policy. A good practice is to check your car insurance situation at least once a year or whenever it comes time for your auto insurance renewal, get some auto insurance quotes from other car insurance companies and compare the results.

Can Car Insurance Be Switched With an Active Auto Insurance Claim?

The short answer is yes; you are able to switch car insurance providers whenever you want, even if you have an active auto insurance claim. However, the car insurance claim must be resolved with the original car insurance company and is not able to be filed with the new auto insurer.

Should You Still Carry Auto Insurance if You Can’t Drive Your Vehicle?

As previously mentioned, gaps in car insurance can cause some issues for you, like increased premiums. This can still be the case even if you can’t drive your car for a period of time. Because of that, you should still carry auto insurance.

The best course of action would be to talk with your car insurance agent about reducing your auto insurance coverage. If you feel the best move for this situation would be to switch auto insurers, then you are able to do that as well.

Looking for new car insurance? Insurance Navy can help you out!

Insurance Navy offers cheap SR-22 filings for drivers with a variety of risk levels. Get a free insurance quote online and make the switch today. We are also just one call away, 888-949-6289. Feel free to also stop in at one of our many storefronts. Insurance shouldn’t be a hassle. Insurance Navy can help.

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