Getting married comes with a lot of paperwork, but some of that paperwork might save you money.
Thinking about adding a spouse to your car insurance policy? In most cases, this is a good idea. Insurance companies expect that drivers will let others borrow their cars, especially spouses. But what are the benefits to adding your spouse to your car insurance, and should you always do it? This article examines those questions to help you decide.
Once you’re married, it’s a good time to reassess your car insurance options. If you want to find the best car insurance company, be sure to shop around and compare quotes. Enter your zip code below or call (855) 518-0148 to get a few free, personalized quotes for your vehicle.
In this article:
- Should You Add A Spouse To Your Insurance Policy?
- How To Add Your Husband Or Wife To Your Car Insurance
- When Not To Add A Spouse
- Top Recommendations For Car Insurance
- Frequently Asked Questions
Should You Add A Spouse To Your Insurance Policy?
Most insurance companies require that you add your spouse to your car insurance policy. You are generally supposed to list all licensed drivers in your household on your policy. Insurance companies assume these people may regularly use your car.
Failure to add your spouse to your insurance policy after they move in with you could be a violation of your auto insurance contact. If your spouse gets into an accident with your car and wasn’t listed on your policy, your claim may be denied.
Even if you aren’t required to add your spouse to your insurance, it is usually worth doing so for a couple of reasons. The benefits are a little different depending if you and your spouse share a vehicle or drive separate cars. In both cases, it is usually recommended to be listed on one another’s policies.
My Spouse And I Have One Vehicle We Share
If you and your spouse share a vehicle, your spouse certainly needs to be added under your coverage. Your rates are likely to go up when you add another person to your policy, however, this is certainly cheaper than buying a second policy for your spouse.
If your spouse has a better driving record and credit score, you might even consider registering the car in your spouse’s name and having them listed as the primary policyholder.
My Spouse And I Have Our Own Vehicles
Even if you and your spouse have separate vehicles, you should consider getting listed on one another’s policies. In this case, consider purchasing both policies from the same insurer. If you and your partner have different auto insurance providers, you should consolidate.
Adding a spouse to your policy will probably increase it slightly. However, if you purchase two policies with the same insurer, you will likely qualify for a multi-car discount. You will most likely pay less for your combined policies than you pay individually with separate policies.
Additionally, when your insurer finds out that you are married, there is a fair chance your rates will decrease. Married people tend to file fewer claims and so generally can secure lower premiums.
Finally there is a convenience to having two policies bundled under one account. You can manage your policies in the same place and pay your bill together, rather than juggling multiple companies and providers, each of which may have a different claims process and billing cycle.
How To Add Your Husband Or Wife To Your Car Insurance
If you are ready to add your spouse to your car insurance, simply contact your insurance provider (or your spouse's insurance provider) and ask to do so.
When you add your spouse to your policy, you can either add your spouse as a policy co-owner or as a listed driver. Co-owners have control over the policy and can themselves file claims, change coverage, and pay bills. A listed driver is covered by a policy, but cannot do any of the above mentioned things.
In most cases, there’s no reason not to have your spouse listed as a co-owner.
When Not To Add A Spouse
Why wouldn’t you add your spouse to your coverage? One reason may be if they have a very bad driving record. If they are seen as particularly risky to insure, it may be better to have them have their own high-risk policy.
You can specifically exclude a spouse from coverage. However, not all auto insurance companies will allow you to do this. Contact your insurance carrier and ask if you are interested in this option. If you decide to list your spouse as an excluded driver, that means they can never drive your vehicle.
Top Recommendations For Car Insurance
Marriage may ultimately result in lower car insurance premiums, especially if both people have strong driving records. Bundling policies is often cheaper than buying two policies separately, too. If you’re recently married, it’s a great time to reassess your car insurance options. During your search, consider two providers that performed well in our industry-wide review: USAA and Progressive.
Enter your zip code below or call our designated quotes team at (855) 518-0148 to compare free car insurance quotes from providers in your area.
Best For Military: USAA
USAA was founded in 1922 and has since grown into one of the largest car insurance companies in the U.S. Originally founded by military officers, USAA continues to offer insurance and banking products exclusively to military service members and their families. If either you or your spouse is eligible for a USAA policy, then you can both get USAA car insurance after your marriage. If this is an option for you, we recommend getting a quote from the insurer. USAA is the only auto insurance provider that we rated a full 5.0 out of 5.0 stars.
USAA customers appreciate excellent customer service and a smooth claims processes. In the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Auto Insurance StudySM overall customer satisfaction index (by U.S. region), USAA scored a full 5 out of 5 (“among the best”) in every region. The J.D. Power results are generated by contacting over 40,000 customers. Customers are asked to rank their insurers by the following factors:
- Policy offerings
- Billing process
- Policy information
USAA also receives top marks from AM Best (A++). It is a company with solid financial founding and a trusted reputation. To learn more, read our complete USAA auto insurance review.
Best For High-Risk Drivers: Progressive
We rate Progressive insurance 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. Depending on the discounts for which you are eligible, a Progressive policy may be your cheapest option. We think Progressive car insurance is a particularly good option for high-risk drivers because of offerings like small and large accident forgiveness.
Some of the discounts offered by Progressive include:
- Good student discount
- Multiple vehicle discount
- Multiple policy discount
- Anti-theft device discount
- Homeowner discount
- Continuous coverage discount
We found that Progressive receives a relatively low volume of customer complaints through the Better Business Bureau. The company has a long history of service, and is a good bet if you can find a policy with the rates you desire. Read our full Progressive auto insurance review to learn more.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I add my wife to my car insurance?
In most cases, you should add your husband or wife to your car insurance policy. Most insurance companies require that you add your spouse as a driver, and failing to notify your insurer that you are living with a spouse may result in a denied claim.
If your spouse has an especially poor driving record, adding them to your policy may greatly increase your rates. If this is the case, you may be able to contact your provider and ask to have your spouse listed as an excluded driver. Not all auto insurance companies offer this option, however. At the very least, you should certainly notify your insurance company that you are living with a spouse.
How much does it cost to add my wife to my car insurance?
Adding your husband or your wife to your car insurance will likely increase your premium, but it should be cheaper than having two separate policies unless your spouse has a poor driving history. Married couples generally pay lower rates per person because research shows that they aren’t as likely to file claims.
Is it cheaper to add someone to your car insurance?
It is usually cheaper to add someone to your car insurance than it is for that person to purchase their own policy. Most auto insurance providers offer multi-car and multi-policy discounts that are advantageous for married couples.
How do I add my wife to my insurance?
If you want to add your husband or wife to your insurance, simply notify your car insurance provider. Call your provider’s customer service department and ask to have your spouse included as a listed driver on your insurance policy.