If you have multiple drivers in the same household, you must take certain steps to ensure they are covered. Only authorized drivers in the same Massachusetts household are covered under MA auto insurance policies. Failure to list additional drivers could leave you without coverage in case of an accident.
What Are Authorized Drivers
Authorized drivers are licensed individuals living at the same address that are listed in your auto insurance policy as drivers of a vehicle. For example, a vehicle may be owned by a wife but her husband and teenage son may be authorized drivers. Your auto insurance policy typically covers other drivers of your vehicle, but only if they live at a different address. Anyone residing at your same address are not covered unless specifically listed.
Does Listing Authorized Drivers Increase My Insurance Rate
The answer is, it depends. If authorized drivers have their own insurance policy, then your premium would not be affected. For instance, if your husband has his own vehicle and insurance, then listing him on your policy as an authorized driver does not change your insurance rate. If you share a policy with 2 vehicles, then you will be listed as the primary driver of one vehicle, and he the other, for the purposes of calculating the premium. You are both authorized to drive each others’ vehicles. However, if your teenage son has no car or insurance of his own, then listing him will increase your rates.
What Happens If Someone Is Not Listed as an Authorized Driver
Most auto insurance policies indicate that only authorized drivers in the same Massachusetts household are covered by the insurance policy. So, let’s imagine that your teenage son lives in your home and takes your car for a drive. He subsequently gets into an accident, which is determined to be his fault. You may have collision coverage in your policy, but your insurance company may refuse to cover the damage to your vehicle.
We use the teenage example because many families opt not to insure teenage drivers who may occasionally operate a family vehicle. Although this may save money on your auto insurance, it may cost you a lot more if your teenager gets into an accident! With the high cost of vehicle repairs and medical expenses, you must ask yourself whether you can afford not to be insured.