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Life can get busy. Between working full time, spending time with your family, and maintaining your home, it doesn’t leave you much time throughout the week to take care of other business. Unfortunately, the state doesn’t care if you’re short on time when it comes to car insurance laws.
There are no acceptable excuses for people to drive uninsured.
If you’re looking to switch your insurance carriers or you’re going to shop for your first car on the weekend, you’ll have to do business with a company that’s open on Saturdays or Sundays.
First, you need to decide the type of insurance company with whom you want to do business. Then plan accordingly so that you can get the quotes that you need before you apply for auto insurance.
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You Need Coverage Right Away When You Buy A Car
You can’t procrastinate when it comes to auto insurance. If you’re going purchase a car, you better be sure that you’re prepared to buy insurance as well.
As soon as you purchase a car, you’re the car’s legal owner, and it’s your responsibility to comply with auto insurance laws.
While every state’s law is different, in almost everywhere in the U.S. there’s a minimum insurance requirement. To avoid being fined right when you become a car owner, you have to secure coverage on the vehicle.
When you’re buying a car from a dealer, the dealer will verify that you have the coverage you need to satisfy mandatory laws. You must provide the evidence before you can drive away with your car.
Does an existing policy cover a car bought on the weekend?
If you already own a car, you might not have to shop for coverage from a carrier that’s open to doing business on the weekends.
One of the great things about existing insurance contracts is that they extend coverage to some other qualifying cars. A newly acquired vehicle is classified as a qualified car.
Under the “newly acquired” auto provision written into your personal auto policy, it says that the coverage you currently have on your policy will protect a private passenger car that you purchase in your name after the term starts — giving you some extra time to shop around.
Unfortunately, the automatic coverage will only last for a limited time.
How long will automatic coverage extend to a new car?
You can’t rely on the protection afforded under your existing coverage for too long. The policy will have a time restriction that you need to know about.
In most cases, the coverage will only remain in force for about 14 to 30 days. Only the broadest coverage limits and options that you have will protect you.
If you don’t have full coverage on your car that’s on your declarations page, you will get only four days of automatic comprehensive and collision coverage.
If you’re shopping on the weekend and you can’t get in touch with your agent, this gives you protection for just long enough to call to add the car with full coverage after the weekend is over.
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Agencies May Have Limited Business Hours
If you’re in need of coverage, you should know that it’s not always so simple to get in touch with local agents with offices in your city when you’re shopping on the weekend.
You should pull up the business hours of agents that you’ve worked with or those with whom you’d like to work.
Nearly all local agencies are open on business days between the hours of 9 A.M. and 5 P.M. Some offices will have extended hours depending on how many agents are employed there.
While it’s standard practice for agencies to close on the weekends, some will open their doors if you make an appointment in advance.
If you know you’re going to buy a car on the weekend and you want to work with an agent, you may be able to get quotes in advance and then ask the agent to accept your call to bind the coverage over the phone. It’s not convenient, but it is an option that you can consider when you like local, face-to-face service.
District Offices May Have More Flexible Hours
An exclusive or independent agent runs an agency. They rent the office space, they pay for the expenses to run the office, and they set their own hours.
Since most agents prefer to be in the office during business hours, they can’t realistically stay open 12 to 14 hours a day.
If you like face-to-face service but want more flexibility to do business on the weekend, you might fare better at a district office. Not all carriers have district offices, but when they do, service sales agents will work at the site that’s operated by the company.
District offices are open longer hours and will have staff on the weekends so that you don’t have to set an appointment.
Doing Business By Phone is an Option
If you’d prefer not to have to go to an agent’s office or a district office to do business, you can call the company. You could call the agent directly but not if the agent’s office is closed.
During the hours when the local offices are closed, you can call a toll-free number and talk to a sales agent by phone.
Some carriers don’t even use agents to sell their auto insurance products. These carriers are called direct writers. Direct writers advertise and offer their services by phone and the Internet. If you want free quotes 24 hours a day, you can call direct writers toll-free to get them.
Thus, you can get insurance from your home or a dealer’s office during the week or even late on Sunday night.
Quoting and Buying Insurance Online
The Internet has changed the way that consumers can shop for anything from cars to car insurance. Since auto insurance is one of those things that’s personalized, you can’t just pull up an online marketplace to compare pricing.
You’ll have to get quotes to see how much the insurer will charge you. Many companies have online quoting systems.
You could get quotes online directly from the insurer on their official page. If you are set on buying coverage through one company, that’s a convenient option. If you’re looking for the best prices, you can use an online rate quote tool.
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