Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager

UPDATED: Sep 26, 2020

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Key takeaways...

  • Choosing to add a family member to your car insurance may sound like a quick decision, but there are several things to consider
  • If you are contemplating adding your son to your policy, his previous history can be a factor
  • During the policy change, your provider may look up his insurance history, driving record, or his history of claims
  • Additionally, his age may be a factor in how his insurance risk is calculated; leading to potentially higher premiums
  • Take your son’s living situation, his age, and how often he operates a vehicle into consideration before making any changes

When you decide to add your son onto your car insurance, make sure you think things through before completing the process.

There are some situations that may require you to add him to your policy, but his previous choices and decisions can impact your current and future coverage.

It’s important to look at the following:

  • His living situation
  • How often he uses a car
  • His current age
  • His past insurance history and driving record

See what it will cost to add your son to your insurance today. Use our free comparison tool to see the rates of top companies side-by-side.

How frequently is your son using a vehicle?

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One of the key things to look at is before adding your son is how often he is using a car. If your son owns his vehicle and is just looking to join your insurance policy as an additional driver, then your insurance provider may look at this favorably.

However, if your son does not own a primary vehicle, then your provider may assume that he will be operating your car more frequently.

If your son uses your vehicle often enough without living in your home, your provider may still require you to add him to your coverage. In many auto accidents, the primary auto insurance is normally what will cover the loss.

If your son has a different insurance policy, your provider may still be the insurance covering any loss. Your provider, however, may be unwilling to cover a loss if it was discovered that your son should have been on your policy before the accident.

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Where does your son currently live?

Adding your son to your insurance policy may be required in some situations; one of those situations is when he lives with you.

If your son currently lives in your household, then your provider may reasonably assume that he will be using your vehicle on an occasional basis.

This also means that your provider will take the additional household member into consideration when calculating the risk associated with insuring you as well as the premium they require.

One exception to this is when your son already carries his insurance policy. If this is the case, his provider may be able to provide a signed affidavit showing proof of insurance. If they do, then your provider may be willing to forego adding him to your coverage.

It’s important to remember that your provider asks you for a variety of details during the quoting process; one of which is about who lives in your household. You should always be honest about this with your provider.

If there is a claim situation involving someone that should have been listed on your policy but is not, they may be unwilling to settle your claim. This could also constitute an act of insurance fraud on your part, leading to more severe consequences.

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What is your son’s age?

Your son’s age may have a bigger impact on your insurance than you can believe.

Younger drivers are often looked at as having fewer driving experiences compared to their parents or guardians, meaning they may lack the skills needed to avoid an accident or mitigate their risk exposure.

If your son is under the age of 18, your provider may increase your policy premiums and recommend that you increase the limits of your insurance at the same time.

As your son gets older and gains more experience, his risk exposure decreases. Due to this, your provider is also likely to reduce your policy premium as he ages.

What are your son’s previous driving record and insurance history?

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One of the things that your insurance company looks at when adding a driver or quoting coverage is the driving record of the individual. This means that the history of the following will be subject to review:

If your son has a poor driving record, your provider may increase your premium to compensate. If his history is too severe, they may be unwilling to insure him.

Another aspect of his past that they will look at is his insurance history. This includes his relationships and insurance policies with previous insurance companies as well as his history of claim filings.

If your son has filed a lot of claims over the years or has maintained his policies poorly, then your provider could consider him a higher risk. Once again, this could lead to higher premiums or their inability to provide him with coverage.

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Conclusion

Choosing to add your son to your insurance policy may be a harder decision than it may seem. It’s important to consider your insurance provider’s requirements when it comes to adding him; some providers will have strict requirements and others may be more lenient.

Remember that your son’s age, housing situation, and frequency of vehicle use may also be factors.

Speak to your son about his previous driving record and insurance history before finalizing any addition, as his record can influence what your insurance provider does with your policy.

If you have questions about how adding him could affect your coverage, speak to your provider first. They can often look at the information you provide to determine if adding another driver is in your best interest and how your policy would be affected.

Make sure you get the best rate when adding a driver to your policy. Comparison shop today and see how much you could save.