Whether both parents need to insure a minor driver on their car insurance policies depends upon the living situation and who has custody of the child. It also depends on the guidelines of the parent’s insurance companies whether the minor must be listed on each car insurance policy or with just one parent’s policy.

If the teen lives with one parent and only visits the other occasionally, the custodial parent must inform their insurance company once the child starts the licensing process. Add a child to a parent’s car insurance policy once the insurer requires it, whether when the minor has a permit or has a driver’s license.

The parent that the child visits should inform their insurer of the licensed child that lives in a different household to see if they are required to add the child as a driver, occasional driver or not.

If teenagers regularly split time between divorced parents, insurance providers recommend that the custodial parent add the teen driver to their policy. In some cases, insurance companies say it is whichever parent has custody of the teen when the child attends school. It is a simple question to both insurance companies covering divorced parents, so ask the insurance carriers about their specific guidelines.

If the same company insures both parents, the teen would be covered by both parents’ policies, regardless of whether the teen is listed as a driver on either policy. That is because some insurance policies define “an insured” as a person related to you by blood, marriage or adoption who is a household resident.

Since not all policies are identical, read through your auto insurance policy’s language and contact your insurer for details.

It can get complicated when a child of divorced parents lives with one parent, and the other parent gives the child a car to drive. Make sure to involve both parents’ insurance companies so the child has proper coverage in case they drive the vehicles they can access in both households.