Car Insurance Discounts for a Student Away at School

If you're a student away at school, you can save up to 35% on your car insurance rates with a distant student discount for being far away from the vehicle.

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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: Jun 12, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • If you claim your child as a dependent while they are in college, then you are legally responsible for them financially
  • There are benefits and downsides to maintaining your child’s insurance while they are away at university
  • You need to determine whether it is best to maintain your child on your policy or remove them from your car insurance policy

One of the things that young drivers contend with is expensive car insurance.

If you are in college, or if you have a student in college, you may qualify for even lower rates.

Now, not every student that is away at school is going to qualify for this discount. Read on to find out how you can qualify for this discount on your car insurance.

Then enter your ZIP code above to compare car insurance quotes right now!

Benefits of Maintaining Your Child’s Insurance

If your child is away at college, you may be tempted to simply remove their name as a driver on your policy until they return home.

Therefore, if, while they are away, they drive someone else’s car and cause an accident, you can be held responsible for the cost.

While you won’t receive the ticket and it won’t affect your personal driving record, you are responsible for any of your dependents.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, this isn’t the case in every state, so knowing the laws where you live and where your child is going to college is important.

Another reason that you should consider maintaining your child’s insurance while they are away is that could help them get a better rate on their future insurance.

Many people don’t realize that insurance companies count the time that a driver is maintained on someone else’s policy as a discountable occurrence.

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Downsides of Maintaining Your Child’s Car Insurance

The biggest downside to maintaining your child’s insurance is the cost. Even if they are 19 or 20 years old, their insurance costs are going to be much higher than it would be for someone who is 25 or 27 years old.

Another downside is that you are paying for insurance that, in all likelihood, isn’t going to pay off because your child isn’t driving.

Even though you are helping your child get lower rates for the time when they will eventually become independent, you may not consider this to be your responsibility.

After all, once they are out of college, they will probably only be paying the higher rates for six months while the insurance company establishes the kind of driver that they are.

According to Consumer Watchdog, Mercury Insurance Company charges a whopping 50 percent more for insurance if you don’t already have a continuous policy for at least one year.

In addition, even if the insurance company doesn’t consider them to be an experienced insurance carrier, their rate is still going to be lower than it would be if they were 16 to 18 years old.

Alternatives to Maintaining Your Child’s Car Insurance

You do have the option to not keep your child on your insurance at all.

Another alternative is for you to purchase a car that only needs liability coverage and then use a pay-as-you-go type of policy that charges the bare minimum monthly premiums and then a fee per mile.

While your child is away, they can keep their basic policy in force while not having to pay extra when they aren’t driving.

Not paying for the insurance at all is far cheaper.

Compare car insurance quotes right now by entering your ZIP code below.

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