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Adding a Driver to Your Car Insurance

Here’s all you should know about adding a driver to your insurance policy – how you add them, how much it costs, and more.

Father helping teen driver

Insurance companies may want you to add someone as a named driver to your car insurance policy if they:

  • Live with you
  • Have a license
  • Use your vehicle (or even have access to it)

If you don’t add a person to your policy and they crash your vehicle, your insurer may not cover it. That’s why it’s important to add someone to your car insurance if they fit the above scenarios.

So how do you add a driver to a car insurance policy? It’s pretty simple. Keep reading to learn about that and:

How Do You Add a Driver to a Car Insurance Policy?

All you need to do to add a second driver is contact your insurance company and ask for it. You might even be able to do it yourself online. You’ll have to give your insurer some information on the additional driver:

  • Name
  • Gender
  • Date of birth
  • Occupation
  • Years they've been driving
  • Recent traffic tickets or accidents

How Much Does It Cost to Add a Driver to Your Car Insurance?

What you pay for car insurance after adding another driver to your policy depends on that person’s driving record. It costs more to insure a high-risk driver compared to a person with a clean driving record.

Here’s an idea of what you’ll pay to add someone who isn’t a high-risk driver to your policy:

Insurance company Individual six-month policy Additional driver Cost increase to add driver
Allstate $748 $867 15 percent
Geico $219 $236 8 percent
Progressive $182 $194 7 percent
We compared rates from three top auto insurance companies for this sample quote.

Based on the six-month premiums quoted here, adding a second adult driver with a clean record to your policy will raise your car insurance rates by about 10 percent. That could mean paying as little as $2 more per month for an additional driver, or $20 more per month. Per year, the difference could be just $24 more, or it could be a whopping $238 more.

If you add someone with a bad driving record to your policy, your rate increase will be higher. Your rate increase will be higher, too, if you add a teen driver to your policy. According to our research, it costs an average of $278 a month to add a 16-year-old to a parent's policy.

There are times when adding a second driver to your car insurance policy will lower your rates. It isn’t unusual for fairly young drivers who add an older driver to their policies to pay lower car insurance rates than they would otherwise. Even some older drivers see this same benefit, though — as long as they don’t add a younger driver to their policies.

Which Companies Allow You to Add a Driver to Your Car Insurance Policy?

The vast majority of car insurance companies will let you add a second driver to your policy. The main difference between them is how much more they’ll charge you for the additional covered driver.

If you ask your current company and the rate they quote you is too high or more than you can afford, shop around. Another company may offer you a lower rate.

Who Can You Add as a Driver to a Car Insurance Policy?

You can – and in most cases should – add these folks as covered drivers to your policy:

  • Spouse
  • Children of driving age
  • Other family members in your household
  • Boyfriend or girlfriend

You can add a roommate to your car insurance policy, too, if you want to do so.

On a related note, some insurance companies will make you add anyone who lives with you but isn't a relative as a driver to your policy. Hopefully they aren’t bad drivers with tickets or accidents on their records.

How Many Drivers Can You Add to an Insurance Policy?

How many drivers you can add to an insurance policy depends on the company. Esurance policyholders can add up to four drivers on a single car insurance policy, for example. Some other insurers only let you list three drivers on a policy.

If your auto policy doesn’t make it clear how many drivers you can add to it, call your broker, agent, or someone else at the insurance company.

Can You Add a Driver to Your Car Insurance Temporarily?

You should be able to add a second driver to your insurance policy temporarily, but you may not need to do so. That’s because most car insurance policies cover anyone you let use your vehicle--up to a point. This is called permissive use.

Not all insurance companies or policies cover permissive use, however. Others only offer limited coverage for permissive users. Or they make you pay a higher deductible if you file a claim related to permissive use of your car.

To see if your policy covers permissive use, check out its declaration page. Contact your insurer if you’re still unsure after looking it over.

Don’t rely on permissive use if you regularly loan your vehicle to a family member, friend, or roommate. It’s mainly for when you let someone drive your car for a few hours or days, like when a family member is visiting from out of town or a friend’s car is in the shop.

If they’re going to drive it longer than a week or two, or on a regular basis, add them to your insurance policy as an additional driver so you’ll be fully covered if they get into an accident.

Can an Insurance Company Add a Driver Without Your Permission?

Yes, insurance companies can and do add extra drivers to policies without the policyholder asking for it. For example, they’ll sometimes add anyone in the same household as you to your car insurance policy. Insurers usually won’t add a driver to your policy without informing you, though.

Methodology

The rates shown above are for 40-year-old males with clean driving records, 100/300/50 coverage, 25/50 uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, and $1,000 deductibles for comprehensive and collision coverage in the state of Wisconsin. Your rates will vary based on several factors, including car model, where you live, your driving record, and more.

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