New motorists or even experienced ones relocating to a new state can often get confused about what their obligations are as far as purchasing and maintaining car insurance. The requirements can also change depending on your situation, the location of your primary residence, and how long you intend to be in a different state. Anyone who doesn’t want to find themselves in the position of accidentally committing insurance fraud or not having the coverage they need should make sure to be proactive about their car insurance. If you’re not sure what to do about your policy, read on to learn whether or not you can have car insurance from another state.
Can you have car insurance from a different state?
The majority of people are aware that they need car insurance in most states in the U.S., but what happens when you move or if you travel frequently? Many people find themselves asking, “Can I have car insurance from another state?” The answer is usually no, but there are exceptions for situations that you may fall under, so you should do your research before making any changes to your insurance policy.
Maintaining an insurance policy after you’ve moved to a new state on a permanent basis is actually considered a form of insurance fraud, so you should always take care to switch your policy when changing your primary residence. Otherwise, when you’re in an accident, your policy may refuse to cover you, as you will have technically violated their terms. Different states also require different levels of coverage.
One common exception is for college students, who are not required to purchase new insurance in the state where they attend school as long as their permanent address has not changed. People who spend a significant amount of time traveling in other states may not need a policy there, but you should check local laws. Georgia, for example, requires that anyone register their vehicle with the state if they plan to stay for 30 days or longer.
Does every state require car insurance?
Not every state in the U.S. requires car insurance, though you should be aware of the rules and regulations you’re bound by if you live in a state that doesn’t mandate that you be insured. There are only two states where insurance isn’t mandatory for drivers: Virginia and New Hampshire. These states have different requirements for uninsured motorists, so it’s important that you familiarize yourself with them if you intend to drive without insurance. Keep in mind that the DMV in both states does recommend that you purchase insurance coverage.
In both states, you must apply for a waiver or pay a fee if you wish to forego an insurance policy. Drivers who pay the uninsured motor vehicle fee (UMV) in Virginia should be aware that they are held financially responsible in the event of an accident and that the UMV does not provide any form of coverage. New Hampshire will allow you to apply to waive the requirement, though drivers with a history of convictions like DUIs are usually denied. You are also still financially liable for any accident where you are at fault in New Hampshire.
Insurance requirements can vary significantly from state to state, which is why it’s essential to do your research before relocating. If your move is to your new home state, switching your coverage right away should be one of your first priorities. Short-term travel or moving to attend college typically doesn’t require a change in policy, though some states do require that your vehicle be registered if you plan to stay for a longer period of time. If you have any questions about your policy and whether or not you need to change your coverage, call your insurance company right away to find out what your next steps should be.