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Changing your car insurance after divorce

A divorce generally has two components: the legal aspect and the logistical aspect. The former entails the often-lengthy legal process of divorce, from filing a complaint in Georgia family court, to meeting with various court-assigned professionals, and finally, to reaching a final divorce decree.

Many people think that the legal portion of a divorce is more challenging, and for some it is. But it is the logistical aspect that can easily drag on for months or even years, as couples go through the time-consuming process of separating their households and finances, changing their names and starting over as single people.

One important but often-overlooked step in the logistical process of getting divorced is splitting up the family car insurance policy. Although state law varies, the general rule is that a policyholder must inform their insurer of the split within 30 days after the divorce is finalized.

That notification will likely trigger some changes to the policy. For example, you may lose the standard discount to married couples, as well as the multi-vehicle and multi-policy discounts.

In addition, if one or both spouses move after the split, you must notify your insurer to determine whether your new ‘garaging location’ will result in any increases or decreases to your policy costs.

If you fail to notify your insurer of a divorce or residence chance, it could mean additional liability down the road if you are involved in an accident and your insurer denies your claims. Therefore, it is probably a good idea to add “call car insurance company” to the lengthy post-divorce to-do list.

Source: Fox Business, “Divorcing? Break the news to your car insurer, too,” Penny Gusner, April 3, 2012