Your car insurance declaration page provides an easy-to-read summary of your policy, including your coverages, limits and deductibles. Often just called a dec (pronounced “deck”) page, this is a valuable document to review and keep in a handy location. Here are the key things to know about your car insurance declaration page.
In this article:
What is a car insurance declaration page?
Every insurance policy comes with a declaration page, which summarizes your coverage, as well as the people and property covered by the policy. For car insurance, this is usually a two- to five-page overview showing the limits and deductibles for your coverages and the costs of each.
If you’ve added any endorsements, such as glass or towing coverage, these will also be listed among the declarations, as will any policy discounts. The dec page also lists covered and excluded drivers, information about your vehicle(s), your address and other key policy details.
How do I get my car insurance declaration page?
Whether you receive your policy documents by mail or electronically, the declarations are among the first pages in your packet of documents. They are separate from the proof-of-insurance card, which you need to keep in your vehicle. If you have a paperless policy, you can usually find your declarations, sometimes called a policy summary, among the documents in your online insurance portal.
You don’t need to carry the declaration page in your vehicle, but you should store it in an easy-to-find place — in your home or on your computer. If you can’t find a physical or electronic copy, just contact your agent or carrier for a new one. You’ll also get a new set of declarations each time the policy renews, as well as when you make any changes to the policy.
What does an insurance declaration page look like?
Unlike the full policy, which may contain dozens of pages of legalese, the dec page is short and sweet. It offers an easy-to-read overview of your policy separated into the following sections:
- Policy number: If you ever need to file a claim or provide documentation of your insurance coverage, you’ll need to provide your policy number. The policy number is also listed on the proof-of-insurance card you keep in the vehicle.
- Policy dates: These are the dates that the policy is in force. Most dec pages specify that the policy begins and ends at 12:01 a.m. on the listed dates.
- Insurance company information: This includes the name and address of the insurance company, as well as contact information for your agent. However, if you need to file a claim, it’s best to use the toll-free claims number shown on your proof-of-insurance card or on the insurance company’s website.
- Drivers: Your dec page will show the name and address of the policyholder(s), as well as the drivers, or vehicle operators.
- Vehicles: The year, make, model and vehicle identification number (VIN) of each vehicle. The dec page will usually also list any lienholders, as well as the garaging address for any vehicles kept at a different location than your home.
- Coverage details: The declarations include the policy’s coverages, such as bodily injury and property damage liability, collision, comprehensive and any other coverages and endorsements you’ve purchased. It will also list the policy limits and deductibles for each one.
- Rates: In the process of itemizing your coverages and endorsements, the declarations show the rates for each, as well as the total policy rate.
- Discounts: Most insurance companies itemize the discounts you’ve qualified to receive on the dec page or on a supplemental page that follows the declarations.
When should I check my declarations?
You’ll want to keep your dec page handy or know where to find it online for many reasons. Here are the most important times and reasons to check your declarations:
At the start of each policy period
Make sure the information shown in the declarations about you, your vehicles, the drivers on the policy and your coverage is accurate. Contact your agent or carrier to correct anything that is not.
Most of the information contained in the declarations affects your rate in one way or another. Plus, if you ever have to file a claim, inaccurate information about you or your policy details could slow down the process or reduce your settlement.
While the policy is in effect
If you have questions about your coverage, policy limits or deductibles, the dec page is a good place to start. It’s a convenient reference tool, and you can always contact your agent or the carrier if you have questions or want to make changes.
When you’re shopping for car insurance
The easiest way to compare car insurance rates is to share your dec page with a licensed agent from another company. It contains most of the information needed to provide an accurate quote, though you’ll probably still need to provide a few additional details.
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