Car insurance for separated couples

It can be a challenge to sort out your finances during a separation — car insurance included. Below, we will unravel how to handle car insurance during a separation. Ready to find a better car insurance rate? Enter your ZIP code above to receive tailored prices from top car insurance companies.


How to remove your spouse from your car insurance

If you and your spouse live together after your separation, the easiest option is to leave your car insurance policy alone. Most likely, you share a policy and a residence, and it makes sense to keep the policy as is.

If your spouse has moved out or you'd like your own insurance policy, next steps will depend on who is the primary named insured (PNI) or policyholder. Only the owner of the policy or PNI will be able to make changes to the policy. If you're the PNI, you can call the insurance company and request your spouse and their vehicle be delisted from the policy.

If your spouse has moved out or you'd like your own insurance policy, the policyholder can call the insurance company to delist the spouse and their vehicle.

If you’re not the PNI, you won’t be able to remove a driver while maintaining control of the policy. However, you should be able to remove yourself and potentially your vehicle, freeing yourself to create a new policy at your new address.

Take the following steps to control your car insurance during a separation:

  1. Policyholder should remove the non-policyholder and their vehicle from the policy
  2. Create a new policy with updated vehicle information and new address (if you were the one removed from the policy)

This process can be a bit more confusing if you share vehicles.


Insurance after separation with shared vehicles: registration, title and insurance

If you and your spouse bought a vehicle together, deciding how to handle car ownership after the separation can be tricky. Once you agree on who will take ownership of the vehicle, the other driver should be removed from the car's registration, title, and insurance.

If your spouse is keeping the vehicle, they will be able to remove you from the title and registration through their state’s DMV. Documentation will vary by state, but should be straightforward.

Remove yourself from the title, registration, and insurance as soon as possible to avoid confusion or shared responsibility for a vehicle that is no longer yours.

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Which parent insures a teen driver after a marital separation?

Both parents will need to contribute to their childrens' car insurance costs. If your child will be using both parents' vehicles regularly, they’ll need to be listed as a covered driver on both policies at your new addresses. Car insurance companies need to be aware of each driver on the policy in order to provide accurate pricing. A teen driver presents substantial risk, as they’re statistically more likely to get into an accident and file a claim.

If you’re worried about finding affordable car insurance with a teen driver, we’ve taken care of some of the legwork. Using methodology outlined here, we discovered the cheapest car insurance companies for a teen driver and a single parent are USAA and Nationwide.

Auto Insurance Company (alphabetical order) Average Monthly Insurance Rate with Teen Driver
Allstate $491
GEICO $259
Farmers $411
Liberty Mutual $261
Nationwide $287
Progressive $425
State Farm $281
USAA $278

Auto insurance data methodology

The auto insurance rates published in this guide are based on the results of The Zebra's State of Insurance car insurance pricing analysis. This analysis of more than 83 million insurance rates spans every U.S. ZIP code, using a sample user profile: a 30-year-old single male driver with a Honda Accord, good credit and full coverage at these levels:

  • $50,000 per person/$100,000 per incident for bodily injury liability
  • $50,000 per incident for property damage liability
  • $500 deductibles for collision and comprehensive coverage

To generate pricing for particular rating factors, we adjusted the driving profile based on common pricing factors used by major car insurance companies. These factors include credit score, coverage level, driving record and others.

In some instances, average rates from Liberty Mutual were derived from internally sourced sales data.

The best way to find cheap car insurance is to shop around. Enter your ZIP code below to find out which company can offer you the best coverage at a competitive price.

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Renata Balasco photo
Renata BalascoContent Strategist

Renata joined The Zebra in 2020 as a Customer Experience Agent. Since 2021, she has worked as licensed insurance professional and content strategist. Her expertise in property and casualty insurance informs her work in creating expert home and auto insurance guides to educate shoppers. 

Renata previously worked as a content specialist for Lifespan, the largest hospital system in the state of Rhode Island. She holds a bachelor’s degree in French Language and Communications from The University of Rhode Island.

Renata's work has been cited by Car and Driver, The Balance and Fox Business