This week – the week before the holiday – seems like everyone wanted their new car insured. This, Labor Day weekend, and President’s Day weekend are the best (and worst) for car policies.
For the existing policies, we can extend coverage to a new vehicle from the existing policy. Generally, that extension goes from 3 days to 30 days. The tricky part is new business.
All the major hitters and specialty companies who will offer auto insurance, do so with ‘next day coverage’. For instance, if you walk in on Saturday, the new policy will not be effective until Sunday. They do not say that on the website, so make sure the insured understands before you bind.
My town has two large insurance agencies – one on either side of town. Please know there are insured’s who will either drive their uninsured car to the agency to get a policy or they will drive to the Motor Vehicle Agency and either expect them to provide coverage or call your agency from there to obtain coverage.
First, the township police know about next day coverage because you can find them issuing tickets a block down the agency for those unsuspecting insureds. Second, the Motor Vehicle Agency will not accept identification cards for the next day. If the insured walks into the Motor Vehicle Agency on Monday, they expect an id card with Monday’s date – not Tuesday’s date.
This should come as no surprise to any insurance agent. In general, all insurance has a waiting period of new business – flood, health, and even property/casualty. And yet, once a month I have an agent call up and beg for same day coverage. Or better yet, to back date coverage.
Why do we do next day coverage? This is to avoid covering a vehicle that may have been in a claim earlier in the day.
Another reason is to ensure care, custody, and control. Many insured’s may purchase the vehicle online and have it delivered. Or they may buy it from a dealer a couple of states away and expect to drive it home. Be clear before you start the policy where the vehicle is at that time.
I don’t know about any other auto underwriters, but I always appreciate a photo of the vehicle to bind the policy. It’s good to chat up the insured about the coverage start date also with possession.
Enjoy your fourth! The crowds will be waiting on Tuesday when you return!
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