Florida drivers are using their vehicles less amid the pandemic, but experts warn against letting an auto insurance policy lapse – even if money is tight right now.
“If you were to cancel your insurance, your insurance company sends a notification to the department of motor vehicles of Florida, and your license gets suspended,” said Karyn Roeling, owner of Seibert Insurance of Tampa.
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Roeling said uninsured motorists who get pulled over could also end up with steep fines.
“Up to $500 is the fine you could face if you don't have any insurance in place,” said Roeling.
Florida drivers pay an average of more than $2,200 per year to insure their vehicles – the third highest in the nation.
Now, with job losses, pay cuts and reduced hours, many drivers can’t afford their premiums, but experts say there are ways to slash monthly premiums, including:
- Reducing your insurance coverage to the minimum Florida allows
- Raising your deductible – or the amount you pay before your insurance kicks in
- Signing up for a discount that some insurers offer if you agree to put a device on your vehicle to monitor your driving habits
Drivers should also comparison shop for the best auto insurance rates.
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Websites like Quote Wizard, runs cost comparisons between large auto insurers.
Some auto insurance companies are also implementing policies to allow customers to defer or delay payments – similar to what auto lenders and mortgage holders have done. Drivers need to call their insurance company or agent to make the request, and the payments will likely be added to the payments due at the end of the policy term.