No, college students living out of state usually don’t need their own car insurance. College students attending an out-of-state school don’t need their own insurance if they keep the same primary address as their parents, their parents own or co-own the vehicle they’re taking, and their school’s state laws allow it.
On the other hand, students may need their own policy if the vehicle they take is registered to them, they have a separate primary address from their parents, or their college’s state laws require them to re-register their vehicle.
When Out-of-State College Students May Need Their Own Car Insurance
- The vehicle is registered to and owned by the student: If the student is the only person listed on a vehicle’s title and registration, they will most likely need their own policy. Insurance companies often require the name on the policy and the car’s title and registration to match. However, if a student is taking a car owned or co-owned by their parent or guardian, the student is unlikely to need a new policy, even if they go to school in a different state.
- They change their primary address: If a student changes their primary address, they most likely need to have separate insurance from their parents. Students that list their parents’ address as their primary address don’t usually need a new policy.
- State laws where the school is located require it: Some states require out-of-state students to change their registration and insurance. In Alaska and Idaho, for example, students have to change their registration and insurance after being in the state for 60 to 90 days. However, Massachusetts and Nevada allow students to keep their car registered and insured in their home state for as long as they attend school.
- The student stays on campus year-round: Students staying on campus or at an off-campus residence all year may need to contact the local DMV and their insurance company to see if they need their own insurance. Living at school all year may be considered establishing residency, depending on the state.
Although students are not required to re-register their car and get their own insurance in most states, they should still check with their insurer and their school’s state laws. It is usually cheaper for a student to stay on their family’s policy since drivers under 25 years old, as most undergraduates are, often pay higher premiums for their own policies because of their lack of experience.
There are a few discounts that college students can take advantage of to help save money if they have to get their own policy, including a good student discount and a good driving discount. The best way to secure affordable insurance is to shop around for multiple quotes and inquire about the available discounts.
To learn more, check out WalletHub’s guide on the best car insurance for college students.
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