How long are you covered?
An auto insurance grace period is the length of time your insurer or state laws allow you to delay paying your auto insurance premium without a break in coverage, or the time between buying a new car and auto insurance for that vehicle.
Let’s say you’re having a tough month or you just forget to pay your premium. Will the company cancel your plan if you don’t pay your car insurance on time?
It depends. Individual policies and state laws establish specific regulations on how long you can delay payment before your auto insurance coverage is void.
In some cases, your car insurance company is allowed to cancel your plan after one day without payment, and your plan will expire due to nonpayment, leaving you without insurance. You may be able to pay a fee to reinstate your plan immediately.
If you currently have auto insurance on a car, you usually have a grace period of seven to thirty days before you have to report your new car to your insurance company with or without penalty.
Some states require car insurance companies to provide a written letter of intent to cancel your plan before doing so. In short, it all depends on your policy and the laws of your state.
When reading state laws on auto insurance policies, look for grace periods and cancellation regulations.
Some states require companies to give you 10-20 days to get you back on track with payments. In other cases, like in Wisconsin, auto insurance companies can cancel your plan the moment you miss your due date.
In short, no, but many have auto insurance grace periods to stay competitive, so it’s important to speak to an insurance agent about the details of the plan. Some companies may even allow a number of late payments before applying stricter regulations, for example if you are late on your payments three months in a row.
Other companies may charge late fees or set a higher premium the next time you renew your auto insurance.
Most companies don’t want to lose you as a customer because of just one late payment. However, since car insurance plans are based on trust, be sure to do your due diligence to alert your company of any complications.