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UPDATED: Mar 13, 2020
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Most people live separate lives before getting married. After the wedding, couples must decide what accounts to keep and where to consolidate: whose house to live in, which cable company to use or whose insurance to cover the house and cars. While it’s perfectly acceptable to insure your own vehicle and have your spouse insure his separately, it may be more affordable and logical to insure all of the household vehicles on a single policy. Even if you do not add your husband’s vehicle to your policy, you might want to add him to your own policy as a driver, especially if he ever drives your car.
Why add your Husband to a car insurance policy?
Men, especially those under 25, pay more for car insurance than women do. Even after their 20s, men may still have higher insurance rates than women. Because an insurance company assumes that anyone living in a household may have access to the vehicles on the policy, living with a man will often cause a woman’s insurance rates to increase. The converse is not true, however: living with a woman will not lead to a decrease in a man’s insurance.
Since most married couples pay bills jointly, you might actually be able to save money on your car insurance by listing all the vehicles under your name, rather than your husband’s. The rate increase on a woman’s policy from having a male driver may be lower than the inverse. This isn’t always the case, but in many cases it will be, and it’s worth checking with your insurance company to find out. Most insurance companies also offer a discount to married couples.
You should also always consider adding your spouse to your insurance policy if he drives your vehicle. While most insurance companies will pay for an accident regardless of who is driving, some will only pay for damage if the driver is listed on the policy. This means that you should never allow anyone to use your auto unless you know for sure that a claim would be covered. The easiest way to guarantee this in all situations is to add the driver to your policy.
The other reason to add your husband to your car insurance policy is so that he can assist you with claims in the event of an emergency. If you are ever injured in an accident or otherwise unable to deal with your insurance company, your husband can only handle the claim if he is added to the policy. Otherwise, if he is not listed on the policy, he cannot make any changes to the claim or receive a pay-out without you calling the claims department yourself.
Co-Insured or Listed Driver
When you add your spouse to your policy you will have the option of listing him as the co-owner of the policy or as an included driver. Which you choose will depend upon your family’s needs and your own preference. If your husband is listed as the co-owner of the insurance policy, he will have the freedom to update your policy by adding or changing drivers, vehicles, coverage and other elements of your insurance. Payments can be made in his name as well as yours, so he can have any claim settlement paid to him.
If your husband is added as a driver to the policy, claim payments cannot be made to him, and he cannot make changes to the policy. He can, however, file a claim against the insurance and schedule inspections, provide claim information and discuss the policy with the claims department. He can also have your vehicle repaired at a body shop that bills the insurance company directly.
You may wish to add your spouse as the co-owner of the policy if he is also the co-owner of the vehicle. If you both have your name on the vehicle’s title, co-owning the policy makes sense. If all of the vehicles in the home are under your name, you may wish to retain sole ownership of the insurance policy.
Regardless of which option you choose, adding your husband to your insurance policy is a wise decision. Not only will his access to your policy make it easier to handle claims, it also allows your car insurance company to know who has access to your vehicle. This enables your company to provide you with the most accurate rates and ensures that you will never be surprised by a claim denial if unlisted drivers are not covered under your car insurance policy.