Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates. He has also been featured on sites like UpJourney.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that exis...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Aug 30, 2020

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Things to Remember...

  • Depending on which state you live in, you may or may not have to add your child on your auto insurance policy
  • If you do have to add the child to your policy, it may not affect your existing insurance. You will want to make sure that a licensed driver is in the car with your child
  • Male drivers cost more to insure than their female counterparts
  • Rates can increase depending on the insurance for different driver types

If your child is driving your vehicle, you may or may not have wondered things like, “Are you required to add children to an auto insurance policy?” and “What happens if I don’t add my child to my auto insurance?”

These rules vary based on the state and insurance company, which is why a lot of people ask, “Do all household members need to be on car insurance?” or “Do I need to add drivers to insurance?”

You are required to add children to your policy if they are going to operate any vehicles on your policy. Your auto insurance company may require you to add your children to your policy if they are licensed drivers that live in your home.

This applies even if the child will not be operating the vehicle on the policy. The only alternative would be if the child has their own vehicle and car insurance policy.

Not disclosing this information is considered fraud. You will want to check the auto insurance laws in your state as well as the expectations of your insurance carrier for this particular situation.

Start your search for the best auto insurance rates for your teen drivers by entering your zip code above!

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Do I need to add my child to my auto insurance policy?

In most cases, you will be covered by the existing insurance on your vehicle. This is something you will want to check with based on the state you live in and your existing auto insurance policy. A teenager with a learner’s permit is expected to have a licensed driver riding as a passenger.

For this reason, it is not always required that you add the child to your policy. Keep this in mind the next time you ask yourself, “Do I have to add my kid to my auto insurance?” or “What happens if you don’t add your child to your car insurance?”

If you do have to add the child to your policy, it may not affect your existing insurance. You will want to make sure that a licensed driver is in the car with your child. Insurance rates are determined based on risk.

With the regulations in place for a learner’s permit, it is not generally considered a large risk for the insurance companies. That’s something to keep in mind if you ask yourself, “Can I drop my child from my car insurance?” or “Can a teenager get their own car insurance policy?”

The greatest step you can take is to always talk to your child about safe driving practices. Getting involved with your child’s driving schedule is getting is always a good idea, and providing them with tips never hurts.

The first time a teenager gets their license, it can be scary for parents all over the country.

But if you stay in touch with them and do a little research on your end, it will eliminate the need to ask, “Do I have to add my teenager to my car insurance in Texas?” or “Do I have to add my child to my car insurance in Illinois?”

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How will adding my child to my auto insurance policy affect my rates?

Adding a child to your insurance is likely to raise your rates significantly. It does vary based on the factors that your insurance carrier uses to determine rates. All insurance companies charge more for drivers under 25 because they are considered high-risk drivers.

You will want to check with your auto insurance company to see how this will affect your rates. However, our data suggests that adding a teenage driver to your auto insurance policy can increase your rate up to 161 percent.

Take a look at the following table that shows how much your auto insurance will increase on average by adding a teenager to your policy.

Average Auto Insurance Rates Increases When Adding a Teen
StateRates for Adult OnlyRates with a Teen AddedPercent Rate Increase
Idaho$1,019$2,812176%
Indiana$1,057$2,538140%
Iowa$1,073$2,570140%
North Dakota$1,123$2,688139%
Wisconsin$1,147$3,011163%
New Hampshire$1,156$3,406195%
Vermont$1,166$2,978155%
North Carolina$1,170$2,608123%
Illinois$1,176$3,635209%
Utah$1,212$3,243168%
New York$1,214$3,347176%
Alaska$1,246$3,600189%
South Dakota$1,250$2,776122%
Hawaii$1,255$1,2923%
Nebraska$1,287$3,449168%
Missouri$1,288$2,978131%
Alabama$1,304$3,504169%
Washington$1,307$3,323154%
Oregon$1,325$3,456161%
Minnesota$1,339$3,392153%
Tennessee$1,339$3,487160%
South Carolina$1,353$4,230213%
Arizona$1,399$4,463219%
Kansas$1,412$3,300134%
New Jersey$1,419$4,590223%
Pennsylvania$1,438$3,142118%
West Virginia$1,467$3,766157%
Oklahoma$1,469$3,446135%
New Mexico$1,498$3,991166%
Mississippi$1,504$3,671144%
Maryland$1,541$4,280178%
Arkansas$1,556$4,021158%
Wyoming$1,577$3,830143%
Nevada$1,578$4,785203%
Montana$1,589$3,230103%
Kentucky$1,611$3,903142%
Massachusetts$1,616$3,964145%
Texas$1,644$4,387167%
Colorado$1,675$4,082144%
California$1,783$5,660217%
Georgia$1,815$5,343194%
Delaware$1,838$4,503145%
DC$1,887$5,261179%
Connecticut$1,980$5,167161%
Rhode Island$2,011$5,829190%
Louisiana$2,228$7,007214%
Florida$2,250$5,496144%
Michigan$2,368$6,217163%
Maine$884$1,977124%
Ohio$959$1,931101%
Virginia$993$2,974199%
National Average$1,447$3,775161%
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The worst-case scenario is adding your child to your policy after they have received several traffic violations. Young drivers are already considered high-risk drivers.

If they also have speeding tickets, then they are considered very high risk by the insurance companies. If this is the case, the best option may be to shop around to find the best rate for your situation.

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How can I save money when adding a child to my policy?

If your child doesn’t live at home full-time, then you can save money on that part of your policy. If the child only lives at home during the summer months while off from school, your insurance carrier may be able to give you an auto insurance discount during the months that your child doesn’t have access to your vehicle.

If your child lives at home all the time, it is anticipated that he or she will have regular access to the vehicle.

If the child has divorced parents, both parents may be required to add the child to their insurance. It depends on the access that the child has to the vehicle and how often they live at each parent’s house. More details can be found by asking your insurance agent.

If your insurance carrier is going to significantly increase your rate for adding children to your policy, you may be able to find a better rate elsewhere.

There are companies that specialize in non-standard auto insurance. However, just comparing options among providers is essential. Male drivers also cost more to insure.

Check to see what options are available to set your child as an alternate driver versus a full-time driver for the vehicle.

Non-standard insurance may be the best option, especially if your child already has several traffic violations on his or her driving record. The best bet is to ensure your child drives as safely as possible so your car insurance doesn’t drop them from your policy. Learn more here: can your auto insurance drop you after a claim?

Talk to your child about driving responsibly. Encourage them to avoid common driving distractions such as talking on the phone.

Some insurance policies may have a way to distinguish between a child who will periodically drive versus a child who will be exclusively operating one of your vehicles. This is one way to potentially save on insurance when adding children to your policy.

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