Your Moving Out of State Auto Insurance Guide

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family with their vehicle after moving out of state

So you’re moving out of state. Maybe it’s for work, school, love, or just a dream come true. Either way, if you have a vehicle, you must consider how your auto insurance is impacted. 

Car insurance isn’t the most exciting or simple adulting task. So we understand if the thought of ensuring you have the right insurance when you move to a new area can feel a bit overwhelming. The good news is it doesn’t have to add undue stress to your life. 

Below we’ll explore everything you need to know about moving out of state auto insurance. 

How Long Do I Have to Switch Car Insurance When I Move Out of State?

It depends on the rules in your state, but you’ll typically need to switch your car insurance within the first 90 days of your move. We recommend you air on the side of caution and secure your new auto insurance coverage as soon as possible. 

You can check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles for the specifics on the timeline for getting this done. 

Do You Have to Change Your Vehicle Registration When Moving? 

people in line at the DMV to change vehicle registration

Yes, your vehicle registration needs to be updated to reflect your location whenever you move. 

The DMV requires this because they want an accurate record of where you live and where you keep your vehicle. 

Thankfully, doing this is a simple process. All you have to do is go to the DMV website or a local branch and update your registration. You might have to pay a fee, which should be under $100. 

Once you receive your new registration, be sure it remains in your vehicle. 

While you’re at it, use this time to get a new driver’s license. Your license must reflect your change of address as well. 

Can I Keep My Same Car Insurance if I Move to a New State?

This depends on your company. Some auto insurance companies only operate in certain states, so you’ll need to confirm that they offer coverage where you’re moving. You can often check their website to see where they provide coverage. Alternatively, you can give the customer service agent a call to see what your options are. 

If they offer service where you move, you can maintain coverage with them. However, this doesn’t mean you’ll be able to keep the same plan or pay the same premium. 

That’s because each state has different rules regarding meeting minimum coverage, and you must at least meet the minimum coverage requirements to legally drive in that state. Whether your coverage level changes or not, you could end up paying more or less because of your new address. 

Because there are so many variables, we recommend that you take the time to compare auto insurance coverage rates from different companies to get the best rate. It might surprise you how much your rates can vary from one company to the next.

Also, if you’re required to switch insurance companies because your current company doesn’t offer coverage where you’re moving, be sure to compare rates as well. 

The good thing is you have up to 90 days to secure your new policy, but we don’t recommend waiting until the last minute. You want to find a good time to update your auto insurance before the deadline.

How is Car Insurance Impacted When Moving Out of State?

Each state has its own auto insurance laws – so moving to a different state, even if you remain with the same company, will require you to get a new policy.

Depending on where you move, your premium can increase or decrease. This could be because the state has higher or lower average premiums or because your specific city or zip code has varying rates. This could be because of their history of break-ins, accidents, claims, thefts, etc., compared to where you are now. 

If you work outside the home, your commute from your new address can also factor into how much you pay for insurance. 

So, many factors can impact your insurance rates and requirements when moving out of state. 

Read more: Factors that impact your auto insurance premiums

When Should I Cancel my Current Auto Insurance Policy When Moving to a Different State?

Technically your vehicle’s current insurance policy covers driving across state lines. This means you’re still protected in an accident or other event that damages your car. You can only rely on this for a little while because you’re required to update your insurance within 30-90 days of moving. 

What you shouldn’t do, though, is cancel your current policy prematurely. Doing so could lead to a lapse in your coverage if you don’t ensure that your new policy kicks in before you get rid of your current one. 

Driving without insurance can have costly consequences, including but not limited to suspended driver’s license and registration, hefty fines, and even jail time. Plus, if you’re involved in an accident, there’s no protection for yourself or the other person involved, so you could be on the hook for all the expenses. 

That’s why the timing of your insurance policy cancellation is crucial. 

How Do I Change My Auto Insurance When Moving to a New State?

Changing your auto insurance when you move typically requires these 4 steps. 

Contact Your Insurance Agent

You should start by contacting your current insurance agent. See if they provide coverage in your new state and get a quote for how much it would be to insure you when you move. This is good information to have, even if you choose a new insurance company. 

Research Insurance Requirements Where You Move 

Since each state has its own auto insurance state minimums, you want to learn about the requirements in your state. Also, find out how long you have to secure a policy after moving to your new home. Typically you’ll have a 30-90 days grace period to do so, after which you could face fines for failure to update your policy.

Secure Your New Insurance Policy

You will need a new policy, whether you remain with your current insurance company or select a new one. The best way to make this decision is to be informed. That means shopping around for auto insurance quotes before settling on an insurance company. 

In minutes, you can use our auto insurance comparison tool to compare rates from over 70 top car insurance companies and get the best deal on your premium.


See How Much You Can Save on Your Auto Insurance


Once you’ve found the new policy you want to secure, you should contact them to submit any required documentation and make your first payment. 

Cancel Your Old Policy

Now that you have your new car insurance policy, you can cancel your old one. Just be sure your cancellation date isn’t before the date your new policy kicks in. If this happens, you’ll have a lapse in coverage which can be a costly mistake. 

FAQs About Auto Insurance When Moving Out of State

What happens if you move and don’t change your car insurance?

Things can go wrong in several ways. If you move to a new state and don’t update your insurance to have at least the state minimum coverage, there are consequences for not meeting the insurance requirements. Also, any claims you file when your address isn’t updated could be denied. 

What happens to car insurance when moving?

Your car insurance policy needs to be updated when you move, whether in-state or out of state. Your insurance company always needs your updated address, and you want to ensure you meet at least the state minimum insurance requirements. 

When should I cancel my car insurance after moving?

You should only cancel your auto insurance policy after having a new one. If you cancel your current policy without having a different policy to protect your vehicle, you’ll be driving without insurance which is illegal in most states. Also, you won’t have any coverage if you’re involved in an accident. 

Does your insurance change if you move?

Yes, your insurance changes when you move. That’s because the minimum auto insurance laws might vary if you move to a new state. Also, your premiums can increase or decrease depending on the city and zip code you move to. 

 

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