Marriage can change a lot of things in your life, including your car insurance rates and coverage needs. Based on Bankrate’s extensive research, married couples generally pay less for car insurance than single policyholders. Your coverage needs may change when you get married as well. Because marriage affects your finances and your insurance is designed to protect your finances, getting married presents a good opportunity to review your car insurance needs.
Bankrate’s insurance editorial team analyzed average rates for married couples to help you understand how marriage can affect your premium. We also researched the intricacies of how getting married can affect your car insurance policy, including if you need to add your spouse and if new discounts may be available to you. Our information could help you feel more confident when making adjustments to your policy.
Does being married get me better car insurance rates?
In general, married couples pay slightly less than single policyholders for car insurance, according to our investigation. The average cost of car insurance for singles is $1,674 while the average for married people is $1,625, only a 3% difference. However, the price you will pay will depend on you and your spouse’s driving records, the type of cars you drive, the coverages you choose and the car insurance company you are with.
Do I have to add my spouse to my car insurance policy?
Yes, you are very likely going to need to add your spouse to your car insurance policy. For the most part, this could be a good thing — you may lower your premium a bit and make it easier to handle your insurance by consolidating your cars on one policy. However, if your spouse has a less-than-stellar driving record, this could result in a premium increase.
Named driver exclusion
The general rule is that if a driver is living in the same household as you, they need to be listed on your car insurance policy. Depending on your insurance carrier, it may be possible for you to list your spouse as an excluded driver on your car insurance policy and avoid premium increases. However, most companies do not allow spouses to be excluded drivers.
If you do go this route, your spouse will not have coverage if they drive your vehicle. If they get into an accident in your vehicle and they are listed as an excluded driver, your insurance company will likely deny the claim.
Most companies offer a variety of car insurance discounts to help you save on your premium. While there generally is not a specific “marriage discount,” you may have access to discounts that you did not have access to before you were married.
- Multi-car discount: When adding your partner and their vehicle to your policy, you may be eligible for a multi-car discount.
- Marital status: This is another possible discount based on your change in marital status. When updating your personal information from “single” to “married,” your rate may drop an average of $50 per year. Whether or not it’s true, married people are considered more stable drivers who likely share driving responsibilities.
- Multi-policy discount: As newlyweds, you may also be moving in together –– whether renting or buying a home or condo –– and this could offer a chance to combine all of your insurance policies with one company, potentially leading to discounts.
Should my spouse and I have separate policies?
It doesn’t always make sense to merge car insurance policies with your new spouse. However, it is important to note that if you maintain two different policies, you will likely still need to list your spouse as a driver on your policy and vice versa. Married couples typically cannot exclude spouses from their policies.
However, each married couple has their own approach to finances. If you prefer to keep your finances separate, you may be able to maintain different auto insurance policies. You will likely both need to be listed as drivers on each policy, especially if you live together, but this could allow you to pay your vehicle’s insurance policies separately.
If your spouse has a bad driving record or poor credit (which is used as a rating factor in some, but not all, states), there is typically no way to avoid this affecting your premium. Marriage legally binds you together with another person, so it is unlikely that you will be able to get a car insurance policy and not list your spouse.
Frequently asked questions
Can I exclude my spouse from my car insurance?
Likely not, but this will depend on the insurance company you choose. Typically, even if spouses wish to maintain separate finances, they must be listed as drivers on each other’s car insurance policies. This means that your spouse’s driving history will likely affect your insurance premiums. In some states, your spouse’s credit could also affect your premium.
Are spouses covered under car insurance?
All licensed drivers in your household likely need to be added as drivers to your car insurance policy to be covered.
Can you stay on your parents’ auto insurance policy after marriage?
In most cases, you’ll need to get your own policy after getting married and moving out of your parents’ house.
Can married couples have separate car insurance?
Yes, they can, but your spouse will still need to be listed as a driver on your policy. However, you may find that it’s less expensive to combine your auto insurance when you’re married. If you prefer to maintain separate finances, having separate policies for your vehicles may be appealing. But if you are combining your finances, combining your car insurance policies could make things easier to manage.
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
- $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $50,000 property damage liability per accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
- $500 collision deductible
- $500 comprehensive deductible
To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
Rates were evaluated based on the following marital/family status: single (base), married, 40 year married man and woman with a 16-year-old teen driver.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.