Can You Void Your Car Insurance Without Even Realizing It?
You probably don’t think twice about your car insurance until you need it. You put the policy in place when you buy a vehicle, perhaps scan the terms and conditions at renewal time, and make adjustments as your car use changes. But insurance isn’t at the front of your mind during daily life. That’s why you may accidentally void or invalidate your car insurance and have a nasty surprise at claim time.
What’s Are the Insurer’s Rights?
Your contract of insurance is a legal agreement. Your insurance company can deny a claim or cancel your insurance altogether if you haven’t upheld your end of the contract. That goes beyond paying premiums. When you bought the policy, you agreed to use the vehicle in a certain way. You may not realize you have broken your contract, but seemingly small things can put your coverage in doubt. These are just a few examples.
Using Your Car for Ride-Sharing
You may love the idea of becoming an Uber driver. But your car insurance covers you for personal use, not commercial activities. Let your insurer know you plan to make a little extra cash this way. They may offer you additional coverage. You may also be able to get insurance from an insurer that specializes in ride-sharing operations.
Failing to Update Your Information
It may sound unreasonable, but a simple thing like failing to update your address can void your insurance. Make sure you read the correspondence you get from your insurer. Respond if they ask you to, even if they are asking you to update information that hasn’t changed. Otherwise, you may find your policy cancelled.
Letting Someone Else Use Your Vehicle
When you got your insurance policy, your insurer weighed the amount of risk you posed. That assessment looked at many factors, including who would be driving the car. If you start to let an unknown, high-risk driver use your vehicle on a regular basis, your insurer may refuse to pay a claim. That’s especially the case if it’s the unknown driver that has an accident.
Participating in Illegal Activity
Perhaps not surprisingly, your insurance may be void if you have a collision while engaged in illegal activity. This may include driving under the influence. That’s why it’s always important to exercise caution and follow the rules of the road, so you minimize risk and have insurance when you need it.
Failing to Report Vehicle Upgrades
Your vehicle is another factor that your insurer weighed when assessing the risk you pose. If you make upgrades, that may mean the car is more expensive to repair. That would lead to higher claim costs, so it’s something your insurer wants to know. When you make changes to your car, have a chat with your insurance company.