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Sending your kid off to college is no simple task, and as a parent, you want to be sure they are prepared to live on their own. One of the things you may not have considered is how their insurance needs may change. Here’s what you need to know about college kids and insurance:

Automobile Insurance

If your child is taking their car to college with them, you’ll need to make sure they’re properly insured. Most auto insurance companies offer discounts for students who maintain good grades, so that’s something to keep in mind. Additionally, if your child doesn’t take a car to school with them and is over 100 miles away from home, you may be eligible for a discount on your auto policy. If your child does have a vehicle with them at school, a usage-based insurance option (i.e. a device that monitors driving behaviors over a period of time) may also be available to provide additional credits. 

Lastly, you may want to consider whether it makes sense for your child to remain on your auto insurance policy or if they should get their own policy. This will largely depend on factors like the type of car they’re driving and where they’ll be living while attending school. Also, keep in mind that in order for your child to obtain their own auto policy, the vehicle will likely need to be titled and registered to them, personally.

Renters Insurance

Whether it is your child’s first year of college or their last, make the process even smoother by securing them a renters insurance policy. This will protect not only their belongings at school but also their (and your) personal liability. Several key benefits of a renters insurance policy include:

  • Safeguards possessions: Renters insurance can help cover losses when personal possessions are lost or damaged due to theft, fire, smoke, vandalism, or a host of other issues. Keep in mind that certain items like laptops, expensive jewelry or musical instruments may need additional coverage to be fully protected.
  • Covers liability: Renters insurance can help pay the costs associated with medical bills if a person is injured at your child’s rental. It also helps cover the costs of damage that happens to another person’s property while they are in the rental unit.
  • Provides for emergency housing: Renters insurance can also help with additional living expenses if a covered event results in property damage that requires your child to temporarily relocate while repairs take place.

Whether your child is living on-campus in a dorm or off-campus at another location, renters insurance is critical to protect their (and your) assets. Reach out to your insurance agent today to see what type of plan is best suited for you. 

Health Insurance

While creating your pre-college to-do list, health insurance may be the least of your worries; however, it’s important to understand the option that works best for your student. Many colleges and universities require students to have health insurance. Some schools even offer their own student health insurance plans. These plans are usually affordable, but they may not provide the same coverage as a traditional health insurance plan. If your child is attending a school that offers a student health insurance plan, make sure to compare it to other options before making a decision.

If these aren’t an option for your student, applying for individual coverage through the health insurance marketplace might make sense. And they might qualify for a subsidy to help cover the cost of insurance purchased through the marketplace if their income is low.

Low-income students might qualify for Medicaid, the joint federal and state health insurance program. In addition to income requirements, the student must also be a resident of the state in which they receive Medicaid. So this likely wouldn’t be an option for students attending an out-of-state school.


Heading to, or back to, college brings many emotions. There is always a bit of stress that accompanies the new school year for both students and parents. JKJ Private Client Group is here to help ease those nerves. While there are many things that are out of our control, we can help protect what matters most to you!