Getting engaged is an exciting step for couples to plan their futures together. With all of the major changes that come from an engagement and marriage, it’s easy to miss possible insurance changes. Wedding planning may be much more fun, but talking with your partner about your insurance needs is an important step, so each of you is properly covered.
Sit down with your fiancé or spouse and examine each of your current insurance policies. Check for gaps in coverage or policies that will likely be obsolete once you tie the knot. Making changes to your insurance now can help save you from potential headaches down the road. Below are some insurance changes you may need to make if you are engaged or recently married.
Auto Insurance Changes
Car insurance is one of the first policies to go over after getting engaged or married. It has become increasingly more common for couples to cohabitate before marriage. This cohabitation can affect your car insurance. If you are currently living together or planning to move in together soon, consider sharing an auto insurance policy. Engaged couples who live together often find that purchasing one auto insurance policy saves time and money. You might qualify for a discount as well, such as multi-car discount, if you insure both your and your partner’s vehicles under one policy. For couples who share one another’s vehicles, it might even be required to be added as listed drivers on each policy. If your future spouse is not listed as a driver on your policy and he or she gets in an accident while driving your car, the incident may not be covered because he or she wasn’t on the policy. The easiest way to determine if you need to list your significant other on your auto insurance is to give us a call and discuss your situation with our representatives.
Once you’ve gotten married, speak with your representative about updating your marital status. Married couples are often found to be lower risk drivers and may qualify for lower car insurance rates. Additionally, your insurance representative needs to know that you’re officially married so records can be updated to reflect changes such as taking a spouse’s last name. If you and your new spouse are planning a move to a new location, this can also affect your auto insurance. Let your representative know of any planned moves, so your insurance policy stays up to date.
Homeowners and Renters Insurance
Engaged couples who live together often either rent a home together or one person owns a property where both live. For couples who cohabitate a rented apartment or house, it’s important to consider purchasing renters insurance policies. Before you are married, you likely each need to carry your own renters policies.
Couples, where one partner owns the home in which they both live, share a similar situation. The owner of the home is likely required by their mortgage lender to have homeowners insurance. The future spouse who lives in the home, however, is generally not covered by this policy. Though you may be engaged and planning your future together, it is important to remember that a fiancé living in a house owned by their partner is most often considered to be a roommate, boarder, or tenant. To protect your belongings when you are living in a house owned by your fiancé, it may be a good idea to purchase a renters insurance policy before you officially tie the knot. Whether you are renting an apartment together or living in a house that one partner owns, it is probably a good idea to look into what your policies cover. The coverage limits on most basic homeowners and renters insurance policies are often not enough to cover more expensive items such as your beautiful new engagement ring. Consider adding additional coverage for your engagement ring and other valuable items.
After the wedding, you and your spouse can enjoy the benefits of one shared insurance policy. For renters, this may mean dropping your policy and adding yourself onto your new spouse’s policy. You may decide to cancel both of your renters policies and purchase a new one jointly. In the case where one spouse owns the house in which you both currently reside, you will likely want to update the homeowners policy to reflect your new marriage. The spouse who carried renters insurance can then cancel his or her policy as their belongings should be covered once the homeowners policy is updated. Remember that combining both of your belongings into either one renters or homeowners policy may require an increase in coverage from your previous policies. It’s usually a good idea to make a home inventory list and double check with your representative that you are properly covered.
Many employees receive health insurance benefits through their employers. Recently engaged couples looking to combine health insurance will need to check with their individual employers or health insurance providers to see if there are benefits available to them. While most insurance policies may not cover a fiancé, many policies have begun offering benefits for domestic partners. The definition of a domestic partner will vary between policies. As newlyweds, combining health insurance may be easier. Health insurance plans often offer coverage for your spouse for an additional premium. Many health benefits from employers include family plans that provide coverage for spouses.
Coverage for You and Your Spouse
As you and your fiancé plan for one of the biggest days of your lives, don’t forget to discuss your insurance policies. Engaged couples may have only a few insurance changes to make right now, but planning for these changes now will make it easier after the wedding. If you are recently engaged or married, give us a call at 1-800-640-2920 to learn about different auto, renters, and homeowners changes you may need to make.