August 28, 2017

There is a long list of things to do when your child is preparing to be away at school.  One of the things that might get overlooked is the implications to your auto policy and perhaps a need to purchase home/tenant insurance for the student.

While the children are away from home, they will be living in various types of lodging.  If they are in a dormitory residence, house or apartment, it is a good idea to inquire and confirm what type of insurance, if any that will protect your child and their belongings.  Being in school, they would have expensive items like laptops and different types of electronics that you would like to protect against theft or damage.

Your existing home insurance policy might already cover liability for your child living away.  Content insurance might be a little different and might have to be purchased in addition to your home insurance policy.  Talk to your insurance broker to confirm your coverage and if so, to what amounts your child is covered and what other options are available for you child while studying away from home.

If your child is taking the car to school, it would be a good idea to insure it with the same company as the parents, to take advantage of the multi-vehicle discount.  If the child is only driving the car occasionally, like on weekends and on breaks, your child can stay on the parents policy as an occasional driver, which would be significantly cheaper than if your child was a primary driver.

Having a good driving record free of accidents and tickets can also minimize insurance cost.  Plus some insurance companies also give discounts for good grades.  Remember to talk to your broker about maximizing your discounts.

Some parents may remove a student completely from their policy during the school year if their child is living on campus and doesn’t have access to a vehicle but this may result in higher cost down the road when they want to add the driver back onto the policy.  Another option would be to change the status of the child to “restricted driver” which could be opportunity for savings.  Just make sure to change the status when the child comes home for the summer to ensure the proper coverage in the event of a claim.

Take the time to make sure your child if insured properly at the beginning of the school year.  This would reduce the stress if there is an unfortunate case of a claim for personal property or any sort of bodily harm.  Call us or email us for more information.