October 23rd, 2014
As is the case with many other forms of monthly bills, not paying your car insurance can be a serious and costly mistake. While people struggling with finances may opt to go without certain types of insurance for a period of time, many people simply forget to pay or do so late. While being late is not a major offense, it can have consequences that can affect your overall relationship with your insurance provider. Even if it is simple forgetfulness, some companies can interpret your lack of payment as harmful neglect. If you are worried about missing payments, here are a few things that might occur:
The first step to recouping lost money from consumers is to issue a warning notice so that the person is properly informed of his or her negligence. This will typically state the original due date, the bill amount and the amount of time you have left before you can submit payment without any consequences. The Department of Motor Vehicles notes that providers aren't under obligation to keep providing you with service even if you miss one payment.
Many companies do not go this far if you correct the situation in a timely manner, but you should be aware of the necessity to pay on time. There may be initial one-time penalties or late charges to your account.
Your insurance company can cancel your policy if they see fit. If you have a habit of not paying or if you are not responding to any of their warnings, then you could be at a high risk of losing your car insurance. This can pose a big problem to you and your vehicle because without insurance you will likely be breaking the law in most states and you could be setting yourself up for future financial failure.
While insurance companies need a large number of customers to keep rates relatively stable and to make a profit, if you are too much of a hassle, then you could be dropped. You could be deemed untrustworthy and not capable of paying in the future so there is little benefit for your provider to keep you on.
You could be charged a late fee and then everything will continue as normal if you get back on track with payments. However, continual wrongdoing could lead to rate hikes in the future. Once your policy is canceled, then it will be much harder to obtain reasonably priced insurance afterward. This is because your history of non payment will show up every time your file is looked at. Insurance companies will then provide you a much pricier option because you are a risky investment.
Any court or legal fees associated with not carrying insurance will also have to be paid in due time. If you get into an accident or are pulled over without insurance, then you will have to pay all of the expenses out of pocket on top of being fined.
To ensure that you are up to date with your auto insurance bill, speak with your provider.