It’s possible – even likely – that this year has hindered your overall finances. In many cases, people have lost jobs, had to close their businesses, and have faced huge financial setbacks because of quarantining and the virus. In short, many of us are still struggling to make ends meet every month. If this applies to your situation, then you may not be able to keep paying your auto insurance payment. Making late payments on anything can have serious consequences, but here is what you should know about late payments on your auto insurance policy.
Paying Your Auto Insurance Premium Late
The policy for which you pay late is very much at the discretion of the auto insurance company. As always, it’s best to check with your insurance company for information on how they handle late payments. However, they cannot decide you bill you hundreds of dollars without prior warning because you paid late. The best way to find out what exactly the penalties are for paying an auto insurance premium late is to look at the terms and conditions of your individual policy.
During COVID-19, it is also worth asking your insurer if they are offering any relief during the time of the coronavirus. Many insurers understand that their policyholders may be struggling to make ends meet because of the pandemic and, as a result, are offering options to clients to reduce payments or postpone them. If you are unsure how to make your next car insurance payment, give your insurer a call as soon as possible. It is best to let them know as early as possible so that they can work with your unique situation.
Generally, it’s common for auto insurance companies to issue a late payment fee. This can range anywhere between $10-$25 or higher, depending on the insurer. This fee may be billed to you separately or it may be added onto your next bill. You should always get notice of it, however. If it’s the first time that you’ve filed a late payment, then you may be given the benefit of the doubt by the insurer and the fee may be waived. However, you will most likely need to call the insurer and request this.
What happens if you pay auto insurance late?
Again, this will all be dependent on how the insurer responds to late payments during COVID-19 and if they are offering support and relief for those that have been impacted. When talking to your insurer about a late payment, double-check that they will not pause or temporarily suspend your coverage. Generally, you will maintain car insurance coverage unless you miss multiple payments. At that point, the insurer may cancel coverage.
Even if you find yourself driving less or not at all these days, insurance is still important to have to protect your vehicle against disasters. If you are unable to keep up with your premiums during this time, talk to your insurance advisor who can suggest ways to save or find an alternative policy that is more in line with your needs.
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