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How soon can you change car insurance carriers after getting a policy?


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Question:  My son changed his car insurance in recently and it's too high. Does he have to keep it with this company for a certain amount of time before he changes again?

Answer: State laws and policy guidelines vary, but typically your son could obtain a new, cheaper car insurance policy with another auto insurance provider and then cancel his current policy, which he just started.

A few states allow you to cancel your auto insurance policy at any time, while most states have laws in place that limit a policy's cancellation, either by the automobile insurance company or policyholder, right after its inception. These laws try to stop car owners from obtaining coverage to register a car and then canceling it soon afterwards.

Many states don't let you cancel your policy within the first 60 to 90 days after you start the policy, except for certain situations.

Obtaining another policy with a different carrier, and showing proof of this coverage to your current carrier, is one such exception normally. The other main reason you can cancel a car insurance policy early into its coverage is if you no longer own the vehicle.

Your son will need to read through the terms of his policy. It should say what the cancellation rules are and then the exceptions to the rules. He needs to look for a provision that allows a policyholder to cancel his policy if he has already purchased replacement auto insurance coverage elsewhere and can show proof.

Your son will likely need to request his cancellation in writing and submit proof of his new coverage to his current insurance company, once he has his new, more affordable car insurance policy in place.

So, if your son presently thinks he is paying too much for his auto insurance coverage, he needs to shop around for the cheapest car insurance he can find (with a reputable company). Once he finds the coverage he wants, he will need to start the new policy before canceling his old policy. There may be a day or so of both policies being in effect, but that is much better than a day lapse of coverage, which could leave him open to being penalized by the state.

You son needs to be aware he may be subject to an early cancellation fee with his current insurance provider due to dropping his coverage mid-term. This is why before starting a policy, or renewing your current policy, you should shop around for the best car insurance prices.

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