Are you or a family member a military veteran? Did you know that some veterans get discount auto insurance? Some companies offer a discount for current or former members of the armed services. After serving your country, it’s good to know that some auto insurance companies reward veterans with a discount, and in some cases extend that discount to members of their family. The availability of a discount as well as the particular pricing varies from state to state and company to company, but an independent insurance agent can help you find the benefits you’ve earned.
Armed Forces Insurance Discounts: Who Qualifies?
You may qualify for these discounts if you served in:
- The National Guard
- U.S. Air Force
- U.S. Army
- U.S. Navy
- U.S. Marine Corps
- Merchant Marines
- Any Branch of the Reserves
- Coast Guard
Discounts vary depending on where your vehicle is garaged and whether you are active, deployed, or retired. The ways you can save don’t stop there. Your agent can work with you to make sure that your insurance plan is the best it can be by reviewing your coverage and making changes based on your duty status, overseas deployment, and special assignments. Auto insurance companies offer a variety of benefits, including up to 15 percent off your premium, discounts for buying a policy online, exemption from cancellation and reinstatement fees, and flexibility in payment options.
Military Insurance During Deployment
If you are about to be deployed, experts recommend that you do not cancel your auto insurance. Depending on the state and insurance company, your agent can also help you to decide on the correct method of protecting your auto investment in case of an overseas deployment. You will likely have your car in a garage or storage unit while you are away, and there are no guarantees that it will be safe. Someone could burglarize the garage or weather damage could impact the garage contents. Once you return, you will have no way to cover the costs without digging into your own pocket.
In some situations, long-term savings can be maximized by maintaining minimum coverage on the vehicle. Many insurance companies understand your military responsibilities and will provide you with a lower rate option while you are deployed. That will allow you to retain discounts you earned by keeping your vehicle continuously covered. Some many even allow your to cancel and then reinstate your policy, but verify with your agent to understand the exact benefits of your auto policy.
If you do choose to cancel your auto insurance because of an impending deployment, your carrier will likely waive all cancellation fees and rate penalties. Once you return, you can sign up for the same policy you had prior to leaving. This includes your previous military discount. Your agent may ask you to verify your military service with a letter from your commanding officer stating the dates of your time overseas. The letter will also need certify that you have not driven any cars since your return (and prior to the reinstatement of your auto insurance policy).
If you are in the service, but are not the primary policyholder, ask your family member call their agent in order to have your name temporarily removed from the insurance.
It’s easy to update your policy, if your military responsibilities require you to relocate in a different area of the United States. Simply call your independent insurance agent and notify them of your new address. Then, they can update your policy and send you any new information by mail.
Car Insurance for Veterans
Even if you have retired from the military, you still may qualify for discounts on your auto insurance. The discount will vary depending upon your state of residence, whether or not you belong to a military association, and your insurance company. Speak with your independent insurance agent to find out more.
Military Insurance for Association Members
Your independent agent can also check to see if you might qualify for a lifetime discount. The agent can make sure that you are taking advantage of any other discounts, like those available through associations like the National Infantry Association. While discounts are a great benefit for military members, always remember that it’s about the quality of the coverage more than the price. According to one military organization, “Price can be a primary factor buying auto insurance, especially for younger military members and their families.” Don’t let the size or number of discounts rule your purchasing decisions. It is important to ensure that you have enough coverage to protect against a totaled or stolen vehicle. There are always other ways to save. For example:
- Raising your deductible can be risky, but it will also lower your annual premium
- Purchase a car that insurance companies consider to be at a lower risk for theft and cost less to repair
- If you have teenage drivers in your household, put them on your insurance rather than taking out a separate policy
- Discounts for having a good driving record, retirees, insuring more than one car, low milage, non-smokers, and customer loyalty
As a current member of the military or a veteran, you’ve served your county; let an independent insurance agent help you get the coverage you deserve.
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