Can you get car insurance from another state?

Generally, you cannot get car insurance from another state. Car insurance rules and rates vary between states. Compare quotes online to find affordable coverage near you.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 14, 2021

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Your insurance premium will vary depending upon your location
  • Drivers in some states will pay higher premiums based on the rate of accidents, lawsuits, car theft, and vandalism
  • If you move, you generally have 30 days to inform your auto insurance company and get a driver’s license and car registration in your new state

Most drivers know that they need to have car insurance on their vehicles. However, the ins and outs of car insurance can be vague and even overwhelming.

With few exceptions, auto insurance is a legal requirement in every state. It’s necessary as a registration requirement with no grace period. It’s usually illegal to have an active vehicle registration with insurance coverage as the vehicle owner, even if it’s just a temporary registration.  

While each state has their own laws regarding types of coverage and minimum policy limits, unless you can prove financial responsibility otherwise, you are required to purchase auto insurance and keep it current.

You may not be able to control if you can get car insurance from another state or not but you can take some control of the premium that you pay.

Vehicle registrations and auto insurance are closely related, which is why your car can’t be registered in one state and insured in another. Your car should be registered and insured in the state of your legal residence. If you have moved to another state, you need to contact your insurance agent to switch your car insurance policy.

In fact, insuring your car in another state is considered auto insurance fraud. Auto insurance fraud carries several penalties, including denied insurance claim.  All in all, your driver license, vehicle registration, and car insurance need to match. In many states, a vehicle cannot be registered until you provide proof of insurance and get a new license plate. Even states that allow you to register your vehicle without proof of insurance will require it at some point.

Changing your insurance policy is easy. The best way to do this is to use a price comparison tool. These tools allow you to view the policies and rates of several different car insurance companies on one platform at the same time.

Start comparison shopping for the best auto insurance rates by using our FREE online quote tool! Enter your zip code above to get started!

How are car insurance rates calculated?

Your car insurance carrier uses several different factors to determine what premium you will pay for coverage.

While most carriers will not release the specific formulas they use or how much each factor is weighted, we do know that these are the most common areas car insurances carriers look at when determining the price of a policy:


Your zip code plays a large role in how much of a risk you are to your insurance company.

If you live in an area where car theft is high or an area where car accidents and associated lawsuits are higher than most places, you can expect to pay higher insurance premiums.

In addition, if you live in an area that is prone to natural disasters, you will likely pay a higher premium for comprehensive coverage.

Where the Car Is Housed

Cars that are parked in an attached garage are generally safer than those that are parked on the street or in a carport.

Cars that are not routinely kept in a garage are at a higher risk for theft, vandalism, and even damage from weather and their drivers will pay more for their auto insurance coverage.

How Much the Car Is Driven

The more you drive your car the higher the risk you are to your insurance company. The more time you spend on the road, the higher premium you will pay.

Your Credit Score

Many consumers are unaware of this fact, however, most car insurance carriers will utilize your credit report when determining your rates.

Checking your credit report is legal in most states and allows auto insurance companies to assess your risk based on your credit history.

Your Driving Record

It goes without saying that your past driving habits will play a part in your premium.

If you have a history of frequent or high dollar claims or tickets for moving violations, you will most likely pay a higher premium than someone who does not.

You are given a higher premium because, in most cases, past driving behavior can predict future driving behavior.

Your Age

Unfortunately, age is a contributing factor to your auto insurance policy’s price tag that you do not have any control over.

Older and more experienced drivers will generally be less of a risk, and therefore, will pay lower rates than their younger and less experienced peers.

Your Gender

While your own personal driving record will hold more weight, underwriters do consider your gender when assigning a price to your policy.

Gender plays a big factor because, on a whole, female drivers tend to have fewer accidents, fewer DUIs, and when they do get into accidents they are not as severe as those with male drivers.

These facts have earned female drivers a lower premium on a whole.

Your Vehicle Type

If the vehicle you drive is more expensive, more likely to be vandalized or stolen, or more likely to suffer serious damages in an accident, you will probably pay a higher premium.

You can avoid this by contacting your insurance company prior to purchasing a new car to find out what your cheaper options might be when you purchase an insurance policy for it.

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Can I get car insurance from another state?

There may be many different reasons you are curious to find out if you can get car insurance from another state. Maybe you have just moved or are planning a move, maybe you are out-of-state for college, or perhaps you are on a vehicle loan with a driver in another state.

Whatever your reason for wanting to know, it is best to proceed with caution.

Generally, the answer is no. You cannot get car insurance from another state.

In fact, in some cases, it may be considered insurance fraud to not have your car insured in your primary state of residence.

With a significant portion of your premium relying on your location and even laws regarding auto insurance in your state, it is important to keep your location updated with your insurance company.

In some cases, you may even see a decrease in your premium when you move out of state.

Once you have moved to a new state, you have 30 days, in most states, to inform your insurance carrier of your new residency as well as to update your driver’s license and vehicle registration.

It is usually wise to take all of the steps at relatively the same time as to not face undue questioning if you are pulled over when only one or two of the changes have been made.

What coverage types do I need in my state?

Your auto insurance company should inform you of the mandatory insurance coverage types in your state as well as the minimum policy limits.

You will find that these following requirements can vary from one state to the next.

  • Liability Insurance – Most states require all drivers to carry this insurance, which pays for damages that you might cause to other drivers and their property on the road.
  • Comprehensive and Collision – If you want your own damages covered, these types of insurance are the choice for you.
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage – Some states also require this coverage that pays for your damages if you are a victim of a hit-and-run or are hit by a driver with little or no insurance.

It is important that you provide accurate information to your insurance carrier when getting a quote, including where you live.

If you are worried that your residence will increase your premium, try using an online price comparison tool to ensure you are paying the lowest rates available.

Check for the lowest, best auto insurance rates by entering your zip code below! Start comparison shopping today!

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Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap car insurance rates.

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