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Is failing to list your husband on your policy fraud?


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Question: My wife told her insurance company that she was not married, because my license is revoked.  Is this insurance fraud? 

Answer:  Yes, purposely misrepresenting something to your car insurance company is, in most states, a form of insurance fraud. If caught, one can receive penalties from the state that range from a fine to jail time.

When applying for a car insurance policy, you are required to give accurate answers and disclose any information that is material to the risk the insurer is taking on.

When you give facts that are not truthful (like you are single when you are married) or omit information (like that someone else lives in your household), this is called material misrepresentation.

The false information your wife provided to the auto insurance company influenced their decision to issue the policy, as well as how they calculated her premium. If they find out, her insurer will have to recalculate her car insurance rates, or it might just void her policy back to its date of inception since it was issued based on incorrect information.

It appears you reside in Maryland. The Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) says that insurance applications specially state that if anyone “knowingly and willfully presents false information in an application for insurance” that person can be “found guilty of a crime and may be subject to fines and confinement in prison.”

Maryland takes fraud seriously because even minor incidents of insurance fraud hurt everyone. The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) estimates that the average household pays an extra $300 in insurance premiums each year to offset the cost of insurance fraud.

What your wife needs to do is to contact her insurance company with the accurate information about being married and that her spouse has a revoked license. Since you can’t drive, she should ask about having you excluded from the policy.

The state of Maryland allows household members, including spouses, to be excluded from personal auto insurance policies under a named driver exclusion (per Maryland Code section 27-609).

By excluding you from the policy, you won't be rated on as a driver. This way, your wife should be able to legally, without misrepresenting any facts, get a car insurance policy whose rates are not affected by your revoked license status. Your wife may also see a reduction in her car insurance rates from being listed as married since married drivers typically have lower rates than single individuals.

Just be aware that if you are excluded that you cannot, under any circumstance, drive the insured cars, because auto coverages will not be extended to you if you are in an accident. So, if there is an emergency, call a friend or call a taxi but don’t drive your wife’s car.

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1 Responses to "Is failing to list your husband on your policy fraud?"
  1. Visitor

    The statement that "her rates will go down" may or may not be true. I to had this issue and my rates WENT UP not down, and it will be a cold very cold day in you know where before she will be able to get her husband back on her policy and when she does it will cost a lot, but alas I don't live in Maryland I live in California and we get hosed for everything.

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