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 ex...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jan 7, 2021

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Things to Remember...

  • If you have a roommate or partner, you can be on the same auto insurance policy
  • You can have a policy as a single household or simply add the other person as an additional driver to your policy
  • Usually, you can get a discount for having multiple policies under the same insurance provider

People often wonder about auto insurance for unmarried couples like a roommate, significant other, or domestic partner. The good news is that if you live with someone but aren’t a married couple, you can still combine your auto insurance policies into unmarried couple auto insurance coverage. This works for domestic partners, roommates, siblings, etc.

However, it can be tricky to compare auto insurance rates, even from the best companies, as you have multiple different coverage options when it comes to combining insurance policies.

If you want to search for unmarried couple auto insurance rates, enter your ZIP code in our free tool for unmarried couple auto insurance quotes right now.

What is unmarried couple auto insurance?

How do drivers combine insurance? Can you buy unmarried couple auto insurance? Should you buy a shared insurance policy? Or is it better to keep separate insurance policies if you’re not married?

One option for combining auto insurance policies is that if you are two people with two cars, you will add the other person as a qualified driver and then ask the auto insurance company about a combined car insurance policy as a single household.

The other option is if you are in a one-car situation, and you simply want to add your partner or your roommate to your policy for an auto insurance cohabiting plan.

You may have to stipulate that they are not the owner of your vehicle, which may increase your rates a little.

Do I have to put my roommate on my car insurance if they don’t drive my car? The insurance company will also require you to stipulate if you aren’t going to let someone drive your vehicle. In the case of a roommate, you need to list them as a non-driver on your policy.

If you decide not to let them drive your vehicle, but you don’t list them specifically as a non-driver, the insurance company will assume that you are allowing them to drive your car and raise your rates accordingly.

This also applies to your teen driver. Many people are not aware that once their child gets a driver’s license, the insurance company will assume that the parent will allow the child to drive their vehicle, and they raise their rates accordingly.

You must stipulate on your policy when drivers who live in your home aren’t driving your vehicle. Keep reading to learn more about your options.

How do you get auto insurance with someone if you are not married?

Can you add someone to your insurance if you’re not married?

People often wonder if they can add their boyfriend, girlfriend, or domestic partner to their auto insurance. The answer is yes. However, different insurance companies have different names for shared policies by individuals who are not married.

  • A few insurance companies have started auto insurance for couples called Engaged Couple Policies
  • Keep in mind that you need to be living with the person who is on the insurance policy
  • Some companies will offer insurance for different driver types as well

Married individuals and parents and children often share the benefit of a joint auto insurance policy. Most companies offer this same benefit to any individuals living at the same address. This could be roommates, parents and adult children, or unmarried couples living together.

These types of policies are fairly new and have only come into play over the last several years.

Even though it seems like this has been the case for a while, the best companies for auto insurance tend to go the traditional route because, legally, it is easier to define.

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What is an unmarried couple’s auto insurance policy called?

Can an unmarried couple get car insurance together? Can I add my girlfriend to my auto insurance? What is domestic partner car insurance? Should I share my car insurance with my domestic partner? These are some of the questions that couples looking for auto insurance may have. Let’s try to answer them.

Different insurance companies have different names for shared policies by individuals who are not married to each other. Some popular names for these types of policies are:

  • Domestic Partner Insurance
  • Non-Married Insurance
  • Roommate Insurance
  • Non-Relative Insurance

As we previously noted, a few insurance companies have started policies referred to as Engaged Couple Policies. This is for couples who may or may not live together. But to qualify, you have to be getting married within 12 months of the engagement.

If that does not happen, the amount of the car insurance discounts you received for the time you were engaged will be added back to your account.

If you don’t know what your insurance company calls the policy or aren’t sure what to ask for, you can just explain your living situation to the insurance company, and they can tell you what policies they have that would match. The most critical thing is that you live at the same address.

What is a joint auto insurance policy?

When you own two or more cars and buy insurance on all of the vehicles from the same carrier, you will have what the industry called a “multi-car policy.”

The term joint insurance is also used to describe a multi-car policy. The difference between a standard multi-car policy and a joint policy is who owns the vehicles.

When you buy joint insurance, the insured cars on the plan have different legal owners, but they aren’t married. Since there are different names on the registrations, both policyholders will be listed as named insured.

Joint coverage can be risky because some companies feel like it creates a risk.

That’s why there are still traditional companies that will only sell a single policy to multiple vehicle owners if they’re legally married on paper. You’ll have to shop around to find a company with lenient guidelines.

When you buy joint car insurance, the policy will show different legal owners.

  • When you insure two cars under one policy, you can save money by qualifying for a multi-car discount
  • When you insure two vehicles, some companies require both cars to be registered in the same names
  • If you and your partner each own a car, it could save you money if you find a joint auto insurance plan
  • In the past, you had to be married to purchase joint insurance, but guidelines are now more lenient
  • If you don’t live at the same address as the other insured, you won’t be eligible for a multi-car policy

You have to be close to someone before you open up a joint bank account with them, but how close do you have to be to apply for a joint auto insurance plan? When is it a good idea to share an insurance policy with someone you live with?

When you’re sharing a checking or a savings account with someone, you have to trust and believe in the other person.

You also have to entrust your partner or your family member when you’re both named insureds on the policy.

Not everyone is eligible for joint auto insurance, and not everyone needs it. If you and your household members own two or more cars, setting up a joint auto insurance plan could save all of the parties involved money.

Ensure that you fully understand how joint auto insurance plans work to know all the benefits and risks. However, auto insurance companies may deny your joint auto insurance if you don’t have an insurable interest.

What makes joint auto insurance work?

Besides living at the same address, there are a few other things necessary for this type of policy to work. Generally, the vehicle needs to be registered in the same name as the name on the lease or mortgage papers.

In some cases, you may have one person who owns the home while the other person owns the vehicle. In this case, both individuals will have to provide proof of residency.

Also, the person with a better driving record will need to be the main person on the policy.

If both drivers have an equally good or equally bad driving record, you can decide who the main person should be based on age and gender.

If both people are over the age of 25, it does not matter who the main person is. If one person is over 25 and the other is not, the older person should be the primary policyholder. If both people are under the age of 25, the woman should be the primary policyholder.

This is because people ages 16 to 25 have higher auto insurance premiums, and males in this category have even higher premiums than females.

However, you need to remember that the main person on the policy is the one who will be held financially responsible if the premium is not paid and is the one who can make changes.

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Are there benefits to unmarried couple auto insurance?

You might wonder why it’s even worth it to sift through all of the underwriting criteria to find a few providers that sell joint policies, but it is.

There are several advantages to carrying insurance on two cars under the same plan. Some of the benefits of financial and others are related to convenience.

How do you save money when you buy joint coverage on two cars?

Is it cheaper to have joint car insurance for unmarried couples? For most policyholders, the most significant benefit when you’re building your policy is saving money. If you have the option to buy joint insurance as opposed to an individual plan, you’ll save hundreds on auto insurance.

The reason for the savings is because a multi-car discount will be added to each car. It could drop your total premium.

Every company sets rates and algorithms. The formulas help the company set rates by the person and by the unit. How much you pay for a unit of insurance is different from how much another person pays.

Not only does this price vary, but the amount you’ll save will vary depending on your total rate and the carrier that you’re with.

The average company will apply a 10 to 25 percent discount off of the car’s total premium. It’s not just a single discount, but two different discounts on two other cars when you pay for a two-car policy. The data below shows the average discounts for a multi-car policy from some of the top unmarried couple auto insurance companies.

Average Multi-Car Auto Insurance Discounts by Provider
Insurance CompaniesAverage Percentage Saved with Multi-Car Discount
GEICO25%
Nationwide20%
State Farm 20%
Liberty Mutual 10%
Progressive 10%
Travelers 8%
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Be sure to look for the most significant discount if the price is your most important sales point.

Is buying joint auto insurance for unmarried couples more convenient?

If you and your significant other are cohabitating and sharing the bills, it’s a lot more convenient to pay a single insurance bill instead of two different bills.

Not only do you make just a single payment, but you also don’t have to remember several different due dates. Remembering fewer dates means there’s less of a chance that you’ll be late on your bills.

Can you qualify for other existing policy discounts?

When both vehicle owners already have existing insurance and they’re contemplating canceling one policy, you have to look at the discounts that each policy has.

When you get joint insurance on an existing plan, the policy discounts that the primary insured already has will spill over onto the new car.

Some discounts that can help reduce premiums include:

  • Loyalty discounts for having insurance for several continuous terms
  • Experience credits for having a license for several years
  • Multi-policy discounts for having other types of insurance through the same provider
  • Accident-free and claims-free discounts for maintaining a clean record
  • Pay-in-full discounts

Now that you know the benefits of joint insurance, is there a time or situation when it’s better to have a separate policy from your partner?

Are there problems with unmarried couple auto insurance?

The main problem with this type of auto insurance policy is when the two people on the policy no longer live together. At least in a marriage situation, people live together and stay together until a divorce. Divorce is legal, and the insurance policy can change based on the legal date of the divorce.

According to FindLaw®, domestic partnerships have many of the same benefits as married couples. Unfortunately, domestic partners, girlfriends, boyfriends, engaged couples, roommates, breakups, or a change in living arrangements do not qualify for legal situations.

Both individuals may have a different version of events or a different timeline for when the relationship or living arrangements changed.

The primary holder of the policy is the one who can make changes, so this can be difficult if that person does not do the right thing or make the change on time. It is hard to define or defend these types of arrangements legally.

Comparing auto insurance rates can save you money on your policy. Enter your ZIP code in the free tool on this page to receive several auto insurance quotes.

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How do you take someone off an auto policy?

You wonder, does my significant other have to be on my car insurance? Exactly how hard is it to remove someone from my policy if we break up or move to different locations? It is easy to change the policy in any way. Adding another car or another person to your policy can occur in a matter of minutes.

While the process takes a little longer if you want to take a car or person off your policy, it is still fairly easy. Just remember, when this happens, you need to be prepared for your insurance rates to increase.

Some insurance companies discount up to 30 percent when you have multiple policies, so removing one can impact your rates. Keep reading to learn more about taking drivers off of an unmarried auto insurance policy

Can you keep someone on your insurance if they move?

Typically the answer to this is no if someone moves out of your house or area, although it will depend on your insurance company.

Insurance companies only combine policies for people who live in the same location.

Now, if you are talking about keeping someone’s name on your policy as an alternative driver for your vehicle, that’s fine.

They can live in another state because you aren’t talking about insuring their vehicle, but you’re only talking about insuring your own.

What happens if you don’t remove someone from your policy after they have moved?

The best-case scenario is that the insurance company notifies you that they are making a mandatory change to your policy.

A worst-case scenario would be that your insurance company refuses to insure you any longer because you defrauded the company. According to the Insurance Information Institute, any misrepresentation on an auto policy counts as fraud.

Therefore, the worst-case scenario is that the insurance company files fraud charges.

The truth is that this isn’t an ordinary course of action for any insurance company. However, if you or the other driver on your policy have had an accident, and the insurance company paid the auto insurance claim, they may require you to pay back what they paid.

Also, if you are found to have deliberately defrauded the insurance company, there is the possibility that you could go to jail.

You don’t want to put yourself in the position of breaking the law to save a few dollars.

What are other ways you can save on your auto insurance policy?

If you want that multiple policy discount, consider choosing an insurance company that sells renters or homeowners insurance and buy those policies from the same place.

Ask about any other discount offered by the insurance company to see if you qualify for something else. You also want to ensure that you shop around for the best rates.

Just because you have been with the same company for several years doesn’t mean that they have the lowest rates.

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What is the right way to structure a joint auto insurance policy?

Structuring a joint insurance policy can be tricky. In some states, the state requires the primary policyholder’s name and registration to match.

When you have two named insureds, that’s tough to do. That’s why you will have to list both names with an ‘or’ separating them. This also makes it easier to cash claims checks when there’s an accident.

You might not have the same last name as the other named insured on your policy, but there are still some requirements that must be met.

The primary requirement is that both cars have to be primarily garaged at the same address. If the two joint policyholders live at different residences, they need separate insurance policies.

You don’t have to be married to someone to buy insurance with them. If you and your partner want to save money on your insurance and don’t want to lower your limits, consider combining policies.

Unmarried Couple Auto Insurance: The Bottom Line

If you have a roommate or partner to whom you are not married, you may be able to share an insurance policy, though this depends on the insurance company and your exact situation. Depending on who owns the vehicle on the policy, how many vehicles you own, who drives which vehicles, etc., it may make sense to purchase a joint policy or to simply add additional drivers to an existing policy.

Frequently Asked Questions: Unmarried Couple Auto Insurance

Let’s recap what you’ve learned in our guide on unmarried couple auto insurance. This will help you understand how joint car insurance works and what to expect going forward.

#1 – When is it better to keep unmarried joint auto insurance policies?

Unmarried couples should get joint auto insurance when they share the same vehicle. It’s safer to add another driver to a car insurance policy to avoid situations where a company won’t pay a claim because another person was driving your car.

Even when you drive two separate cars, it may cheaper for an unmarried couple to have a joint auto insurance policy to cut insurance prices altogether.

#2 – When is it better to keep your unmarried couple’s auto insurance separate?

If your domestic partner has a bad driving record, poor credit history, or drives an expensive vehicle, it’s better to keep policies separate. Auto insurance companies see driving records, credit histories, and cars as significant contributors to risk. When these factors aren’t favorable to car insurance companies, rates increase.

#3 – Why should unmarried couples share auto insurance policies?

Sharing auto insurance will make it easier for a couple’s finances. The car insurance bill won’t fall on one person, and a couple can team up on premium costs each month.

#4 – How does auto insurance work if you’re living together, not married, and sharing a car?

Unmarried couples that share a car should be listed on the same auto insurance policy. Auto insurance companies will ask the primary policyholder to add the other driver that lives in the home. It will be easier on the primary policyholder if both domestic partners pay half of the unmarried couple’s monthly premium auto insurance rates.

#5 – How does auto insurance work if you’re living together, not married but drive different cars?

Unmarried couples who own two different cars will find it more difficult to get joint car insurance. Auto insurance companies can insure multiple vehicles only if the primary policyholder owns both vehicles. Adding another driver could be simple, but adding another car that the primary policyholder won’t work for joint, unmarried car insurance policies.

Find affordable unmarried couple auto insurance quotes in your local area by entering your ZIP code in our free comparison tool. Compare these quotes to your existing coverage and pick the choice that meets your needs.