What happens if I missed my car insurance payment? Sometimes mistakes happen and people forget to make their payments on time. Nobody is perfect and there are times when individuals on a payment plan simply forget to pay on time. Most people at some point in their adult lives will end up missing a payment unintentionally.
Other times, people miss payments because they are short on money. Think about it this way: Would you rather pay for your insurance or have enough money to feed yourself? I’m pretty sure most people would rather spend money on providing for their family than pay for insurance. Anyways, during the recession, we have seen a number of people with insufficient funds to make their monthly insurance payments.
What happens when you are late or missed your car insurance payment?
If you forget to pay up on time and realize it, the first thing you should do is get in touch with your insurance company. Let them know that your payment is late and always communicate with them. The worst thing you could possibly do for yourself is to avoid contacting them and trying to run away from the problem. Most insurance companies are fairly lenient when people forget a payment here and there because they try to keep their customers satisfied.
In general, many of the top insurers will offer an extension on the number of days to make a payment if it is your first late payment. Some will give you a few days to get them the money, while others may give you up to a week. There are a few insurance companies that will not tolerate late payments or will charge a late fee. In cases like these, you have to suck it up and pay whatever late fee you have accrued.
Failing to make a payment before the “grace period” ends
Most insurance companies will give you up to 5 days to pay the money that you owe for your insurance. If it is not paid up on time, your insurance may be temporarily suspended or revoked. If you don’t pay the insurer what you owe in full after 2 weeks, there is a chance that your policy may be completely terminated. When your account gets terminated, you will likely still need to pay the company what you owed for the month that you missed in addition to the late fees that you’ve built up.
Keep in mind that you should know the terms and agreement specifically issued by your insurance company. If you are insured by a company that offers zero grace period for late payments on premiums, you are likely not going to have any insurance protection. This means that if you are involved in an accident, not only will the police charge you with driving uninsured, but you will have to pay for all damages out of your own pocket.
What if I don’t have enough money to pay for my insurance this month?
If you don’t have enough money you have a few valid options to choose from:
1. Find a way to come up with money for the payment – Most people end up taking out a loan, borrowing money from family (or close friends), or doing some extra work so that they have enough for their auto insurance. It can be tough to come up with money when you’re in a tough situation, but you need to step up and do your best.
2. Temporarily stop driving – Take city transportation, carpool, or ride a bike to wherever you need to go. Temporarily taking a break from driving is what you must do if you don’t have insurance. Most people can cope in the short term without coverage – just make sure you come up with the money to buy it back when you need it.
3. Negotiate with your insurance company – Certain insurance companies will allow you to negotiate the payments that you are currently making. You may be able to get a payment postponed or your billing cycle changed. However, when doing this, make sure that you have the money when you are scheduled to pay next.
Preventing late payments: Always make sure premiums are affordable!
Although it is important to make sure you have the best possible insurance coverage for your vehicle, it is also smart to make sure that you are only paying what you can afford. If you are currently buying extra coverage, when you can’t afford it, you may run into some financial troubles (in terms of late payments).
No matter who your insurer is at the moment, it’s always important to check and see if there is a better price available from another provider. If you use the free quote tool at the top of the page, you can get policy price comparisons from the leading companies in your area. Just enter your zip code and compare each of the companies in terms of quotes. Hopefully, you never end up being the victim of a late payment, but if you are, this article should have explained all of your options.