Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insu...

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I started Insurance Blog by Chris™ because I have a passion for insurance. Here at the blog, our job is to educate and inform people about the best insurance for them. Since then, we have grown into national brands with a large team of researchers helping people understand all forms of insurance.

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Reviewed by Chris Huntley
Founder of Huntley Wealth & Insurance Services

UPDATED: Jul 7, 2021

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We all want to pay the least amount for the proper car insurance coverage possible. When you’re under the age of 25, and especially a male under the age of 25, you incur the highest rates when compared with every other insurable group. This means that being added to your parents’ insurance policy makes a lot of sense because the rates are typically lower that way.

When the title of the car is in your parents’ names, you can simply be added to their policy, most likely at a much lower rate than getting a policy yourself. However, if the title is in your name, you can’t do that.

When you are the sole titleholder listed on the car, you will need to buy an insurance policy for yourself. If you were hypothetically in an accident, the insurance company would process the claim in the name of the vehicle’s owner. If the insurance policy and vehicle owner don’t match, they are allowed to reject the claim.

If your car can stay in your parents’ name, there are certain situations where you can stay under your parent’s insurance policy.

But generally, ‘Can I be on my parents car insurance if the car is in my name?’ No.

We will discuss the few exceptions to this rule, but first, let’s talk about buying your own policy.

Is Buying My Own Auto Insurance A Good Idea?

When you buy a car yourself, and you are listed on the title as the sole owner, you will need to obtain your own insurance policy. The very first thing you should do is shop around. Don’t just go with the first quote you get, or your parent’s insurance company, or your friend’s insurance company. You need to get several quotes from different companies to compare rates. You want to find the maximum coverage for the lowest rates.

If you have your own policy, and you have an accident or infraction, you will only raise insurance for yourself and not the policy your parents have. 

Also, if you are responsible for credit, you can make your policy payments with a credit card and use it as a way to help build or establish credit. This will require you to pay your credit card balance off in full each month, so only use this method if you are absolutely sure you’ll be financially responsible.

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Can I Get My Own Policy If I Still Live at my Parents’ House?

Absolutely. It doesn’t matter if you still live at home, if the car is in your name, you’ll need to get your own insurance policy.

Once you’ve shopped around for quotes, and selected a company you’d like to go with, you can have your parents take you off of their policy. 

You may also want to have your parents list you as an excluded driver. This means that you live in their home but are not driving their car at all. You will not be insured on their cars, which will likely save them money

Can I Stay on My Parents’ Car Insurance Policy While I’m in College?

Assuming your car is in your parents’ name, and your permanent address is still listed as your parents’ house, then yes, you can stay on your parents’ policy while you’re in college. It doesn’t matter your age, and will likely save you some money.

If you don’t bring your parents’ car to college with you, there are some insurance companies that will offer you a discount that they extend to drivers who aren’t driving while at school. It’s a good idea to have your parents ask their insurance company if they offer this policy discount, and take advantage of whatever rate savings you can.

If you do decide to remain on your parent’s insurance policy, there are a few more ways you can help get discounts or reduce the cost of their premiums. Depending on the company they’re with, they may offer a discount for maintaining a B average or higher. There are some companies that give discounts for good driving habits, such as driving the speed limit, avoiding hard stops, and not driving late at night very often. For these, you need a device installed directly in your car.

Older cars can also help keep insurance premiums low since they are worthless and you generally hold lower-level policies because they wouldn’t be worth fixing. 

Of course, your insurance stays low if you don’t make any claims either. Infractions like not buckling up, or having an accident that is your fault, will drive up insurance costs. Maintaining a good driving record will not only keep your parent’s premiums low but will help you get lower rates when you do decide to get your own policy.

How Long Can I Stay on My Parents’ Insurance?

You can stay on your parent’s insurance indefinitely, as long as you meet two criteria:

  • you live at home with them, and 
  • the car is in their name.

This can work out well for those living at home to save money, not only are you saving on housing costs, but you’re saving on insurance premium costs as well.

Companies that offer car insurance do not limit policyholders by age, but group them by household. Everyone that lives in the same home, with a driver’s license and access to the vehicle, AND are related to the person holding the policy, are able to be covered under one policy.

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When Will My Insurance Rates Go Down?

The younger you are, the more expensive your insurance policy will be to start. You are seen as a riskier driver because of your lack of driving experience.

As you gain some more experience and keep a good driving record, your policy will start to come down. Age 25 seems to be the prime time to shoot for to start seeing that decrease.

If this is the first time you’re coming off your parents’ policy and getting your own insurance, make sure you shop around for the best rates. Your parents’ insurance company might not want to insure you, since there are some companies that don’t like to do multiple policies for one address. Conversely, there are companies that will offer you a discount, so definitely ask.

Conclusion

While you can’t stay on your parent’s car insurance policy with a car in your own name, there’s no limit to how long you can stay if your car lists your parents’ on the title. The ability to stay on your parent’s policy will keep your rates low while building a good driving record.

If you cannot drive a car owned by your parents and need to have the car in your name, you are required to purchase insurance in your name as well.