There are a lot of things that you expect to be different when you’re traveling from coast to coast. The weather, for example. Or the food. The scenery. (You’d never see that much desert on the Atlantic shoreline.) What most people don’t expect, however, is how much their car insurance will differ as they move from the Atlantic from the Pacific.
Before you start hyperventilating, relax. It doesn’t matter if you’re driving from New York to California and back again; you’re still going to be covered by your regular car insurance policy. If you decide to load your car up with bags and boxes and put down roots somewhere else, on the other hand, you’re going to find out that there’s a big difference. Every state has their own policies when it comes to their requirements for their drivers, and if you’re going to become a certified resident you’re going to have to know what you’re getting into.
How Car Insurance Differs from State to State
If you’re already living in a No Fault state you’re already very familiar with how no fault car insurance works. On the other hand, if you’ve never experienced the ins and outs of no fault car insurance you may find yourself overwhelmed. Breathe. The only thing no fault car insurance really means is that you don’t have to sit around forever waiting for the other driver’s insurance provider to pay your bills after they hit you. Your insurance will handle it, letting you get back on the road as quickly as possible.
2) Minimum Liability Coverage
Every state has a minimum level of liability coverage they want their drivers to have. This pays for any damages to public property and other vehicles after an accident, as well as the medical bills of other drivers and/or passengers. Since that number varies from state to state you’re going to want to do a little homework before signing on the dotted line; ideally your car insurance provider would tell you what you needed to know, but you don’t want to depend on that.
3) Uninsured Motorist Fees
Driving without any form of car insurance whatsoever isn’t the safest path to take, but if you’re one of the approximately 17% of Americans currently driving without insurance you’re going to want to find out your state’s policies on uninsured motorists. Some states allow it. Most charge you an exorbitant fee for it-by the time you’re done paying the $400-600 you’re going to have pay each year you could have added another hundred on and enjoyed minimum liability coverage.
Just a thought.
Switching your car insurance coverage from state to state is simple. All you have to do is contact your insurance agent, let them know your change in address (assuming they’re a national provider) and make any necessary adjustments to your policy to make sure it meets state standards. In less than 15-20 minutes you can be insured and safely cruising the public highways of your new stomping ground.
Now if you just remembered where the grocery store was…