How long can you insure an adult child on your automobile policy?

By Allan Degner on February 7, 2017

Parents often want to help their grown children by providing them with a vehicle and/or insurance coverage, even after they move out of the household or are no longer legally a dependent. Unfortunately this can unknowingly result in gaps in coverage and put these children at a financial and medical risk.

According to most insurance companies, once adult children move out of the house and are living independently, they do not meet “family member” status and as a result, no longer have the benefit of all the coverages provided under their parent’s auto policy. While they would have the full benefit of the policy while driving their parent’s car as a “permissive user”, they would have no coverage while driving someone else’s car, as well as no Medical Payments or Uninsured & Underinsured Motorist coverage. The only way to avoid these gaps in coverage is for adult children to have their own auto insurance policy. This does not apply to students away at school, who meet “family member” status and are fully covered under their parent’s auto policy.

Below are prime examples from our carrier partner, West Bend Mutual Insurance Company of the importance of all the coverages provided in an auto policy:

  • As a passenger in someone’s uninsured vehicle, your child is injured in an accident. He or she will have no medical payments or uninsured motorist’s coverage for any injuries.
  • Your child is hit by an uninsured motorist while walking across the street or riding a bike. There’s no medical payments or uninsured motorist’s coverage for his or her own injuries.
  • Your child borrows a friend’s truck to move and rear-ends another vehicle, injuring an occupant of that vehicle. Your child has no liability coverage for the occupant’s bodily injury or for the property damage to the other vehicle.
  • Your child rents a vehicle while on vacation and doesn’t buy the insurance coverage offered by the rental car company. Again, there’s no coverage for property damage to the rented vehicle
    or bodily injury to others if there’s an accident.

If you have questions about your automobile policy please reach out. Message Us