4 Things to Know About Auto Insurance Cards - NYCM Insurance Blog

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Apr 17, 2023

4 Things to Know About Auto Insurance Cards

Most people are aware that they are legally required to carry their license, registration, and proof of insurance while driving. But when it comes to auto insurance cards, many people have questions, like why do I need to have an insurance card? What information is stored on an insurance card? How often do I need to update my insurance card? Can I carry my insurance card electronically?


We’ve got the answers to your questions here! Continue reading below to learn about auto insurance cards and why they are important.


Why Do I Need to Have an Insurance Card?


Insurance cards, also known as insurance ID cards, act as proof of insurance. When you register a vehicle in New York State, the Department of Motor Vehicles requires a copy of your insurance card as proof of insurance coverage, as well as electronic confirmation from the insurer, in order to complete the registration. When registering a vehicle, drivers must provide the DMV with proof of insurance within 180 days of the coverage’s effective date.

Additionally, the name on the insurance card and registration must match.

New York State law requires motorists to have Personal Injury Protection, Bodily Injury Liability, Property Damage Liability, and Statutory Uninsured Motorist coverages to register a vehicle.


If your vehicle’s registration is suspended as a result of lapsed insurance, you will need to renew your policy and provide a new insurance card in order to have your vehicle registered again.


Furthermore, drivers are required to carry proof of insurance while on the road in order to present it to law enforcement in the event of an accident or traffic stop.


What Information Is Stored on an Insurance Card?


Your insurance card contains different identifying information pertaining to you, your vehicle, and your insurance policy, including:


       Your name and address

       Policy number

       Coverage effective and expiration dates

       Your vehicle’s year, make, model, and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)

       Your insurer or your agent’s name and address

       A 3-digit code identifying your insurer


How Often Do I Need to Update My Insurance Card?


Most insurance companies offer auto insurance in 6-month policies, with some offering 12-month policies. Your insurer will send you two copies of your insurance card upon the policy being issued. It’s a good idea to keep one copy in your vehicle, and one copy on hand for instances in which you must provide proof of insurance, like when registering a vehicle at the DMV.


When you pay your premium and renew your auto insurance, you will receive two updated insurance cards in the mail. When you receive new insurance cards, make sure you replace the old ones in your vehicle so that if you need to present proof of insurance, you have the right copy available.


Make sure you are aware of when your auto insurance policy expires to ensure your insurance is up to date and to avoid any lapses.


Can I Carry My Insurance Card Electronically?


In 2015, New York State changed a regulation in order to allow motorists to offer proof of insurance electronically. This means you can store and carry your insurance card on your smartphone, which enables you to ensure you have the most recent version available in a convenient location.


NYCM Insurance unveiled its newest mobile app which allows policyholders to store their insurance ID cards all in one place on their smartphone. The app enables policyholders to have a quick view of their insurance ID cards, as well as PDF versions, which display your insurance cards exactly as they appear in paper format.


By carrying your insurance card electronically, you can be sure that you are always able to provide proof of your coverage so long as you have your device and an insurance policy. You can also worry less about your insurance card being lost or stolen and feel good about going paperless and eco-friendly!


If you have a policy with NYCM Insurance, don’t forget to download the mobile app where all of your insurance ID cards are conveniently available in one place.


Click below to discuss your options for auto insurance with an agent today!