| |

Guide on How to Change Car Insurance in Germany

Guide on How to Change Car Insurance in Germany titlecard

Do you want to know how to change car insurance in Germany? If you are an expat or a foreigner planning to change your car insurance provider, you might be wondering what the rules, exceptions, and deadlines are.

Changing car insurance in Germany can be complicated, but it can also save you money and hassle in the long run.

It’s easy to change car insurance in Germany. Here are the steps involved:

  1. Check Notice Period (by November 30).
  2. Compare Rates and Policies.
  3. Terminate Old Insurance.
  4. Purchase New Insurance.
  5. Update Vehicle Registration.

In this article, we will provide information on how to change car insurance in Germany, explaining the steps and factors you need to consider before making the switch.

YouTube

By loading the video, you agree to YouTube’s privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

Related article: Cost of Car Insurance in Germany [2023 Guide]

Steps On How to Change Vehicle Insurance in Germany

Typewriter with the word "Car Insurance."

Vehicle insurance in Germany is mandatory for all drivers, with three main options to choose from: third-party coverage (Haftpflicht), partial coverage (Teilkasko), and full coverage (Vollkasko).

The country has approximately 90 car insurance providers, making the German car insurance market highly competitive. It’s essential to compare offers from different car insurance companies to find cheaper insurance deals.

All German auto insurance companies must accept applications under the Compulsory Insurance Act, Section 5/2. You cannot register a vehicle without car insurance, and you will receive an electronic insurance confirmation when you do.

If you’re considering changing car insurance providers, switching to a new car insurance policy is relatively straightforward. Whether you opt for third-party liability insurance or a more comprehensive plan, car insurance in Germany ensures that all drivers are covered and compliant with the law.

Changing car insurance includes checking the notice period, comparing rates and policies, making a new contract, and giving a termination notice.

1. Check The Notice Period

When changing car insurance in Germany, adhering to specific steps is crucial to ensure a smooth transition. The first step is to check the notice period. German car insurance policies typically have a one-month cancellation period.

If you plan to switch your car insurance provider, you must notify your current insurance company at least one month before the year’s end, which means on or before November 30. This provides ample time to terminate your existing car insurance and prepare for a new auto insurance policy.

Complying with this notice period is essential when navigating the process of changing car insurance in Germany.

2. Compare Rates and Policies of German Car Insurance Providers

To effectively change your vehicle insurance in Germany, start by comparing the rates and policies of other providers. Research and assess various car insurance options offered by different insurance companies, including third-party liability insurance and comprehensive insurance. This step ensures you find the best new car insurance to suit your needs and budget.

The cost of car insurance in Germany varies depending on several factors, including the driver’s age, experience, and record, vehicle value and engine size, number of drivers insured, location, and vehicle use.

According to simplegermany.com, the average annual car insurance premium in Germany in 2020 was about €258 for liability, plus €329 for the fully comprehensive add-on or €85 for the partial cover add-on.

Note, keep in mind that car insurance rates aren’t always the same. The insurance policy depends on the car insurance contract and insurance company.

Rates of Car Insurance Providers in Germany

Car insurance rates in Germany are influenced by the provider you choose. Various insurance companies offer different premiums and coverage options for car insurance.

Here are some examples of car insurance in Germany provider rates:

  • Allianz is the largest car insurance company in Germany, offering policies starting at 72 EUR/year.
  • CosmosDirekt is a car insurance company known for low prices and excellent value for money, allowing savings of up to 40% with proper vehicle insurance.
  • AXA provides various essential insurance products, including private liability insurance, household insurance, and supplemental dental insurance, with policies starting at just 1.73 euros per month.

Note: To find the best car insurance cost, compare offers from different insurance companies. Some comparison websites that can help you compare insurance policies from German companies include Verivox and Joonko

3. Terminate Old Insurance

Terminating your old car insurance policy in Germany is essential to comply with legal requirements, as all registered vehicles must have valid liability insurance. It also prevents overlapping coverage, avoids unnecessary expenses, and ensures administrative clarity in insurance policy management.

Here are the essential steps to terminate your old car insurance policy in Germany before acquiring a new one:

  1. Review Your Current Policy:
    • Examine your existing third-party liability insurance contract to understand its terms, coverage, and termination requirements.
  2. Draft a Termination Letter:
    • Create a formal termination letter to your old insurance provider, including your policy details, your intention to terminate, and the effective date (no later than November 30).
  3. Send the Termination Letter:
    • Mail the termination letter to your previous insurance provider, ensuring it reaches them at least one month before the end of the year (by November 30). Request confirmation of receipt.

4. Purchase and Activate the New Insurance Policy

After terminating your old car insurance policy in Germany, the next step is to purchase and activate your new insurance policy. While waiting for confirmation from your previous insurance provider, you can proactively move forward with the transition.

Contact your chosen insurance company to complete the formalities of your new policy. This typically involves finalizing policy details, making required payments, and setting the effective date for your new coverage.

Whether switching from third-party liability insurance to comprehensive coverage or exploring other options, this step ensures you maintain continuous coverage and peace of mind.

Car owners should proactively make the necessary arrangements to ensure a seamless transition between their old and new car insurance policies.

5. Update Vehicle Registration

Once your new car insurance policy is in place after switching, the next crucial step is to update your vehicle registration with the new insurance details. This typically entails visiting the local vehicle registration office (Zulassungsstelle), where you must provide proof of your new insurance coverage.

In Germany, valid liability insurance is a prerequisite for registering a vehicle. Car owners must ensure that their registration accurately reflects their new insurance policy’s current and comprehensive coverage.

This keeps you compliant with German insurance regulations and provides peace of mind, knowing that your vehicle is adequately insured and your registration is up to date.

What Are The Requirements For Changing Car Insurance in Germany?

Orange toy car and laptop keyboard

Changing car insurance in Germany, whether switching to comprehensive or partial coverage insurance, involves specific requirements to ensure a seamless transition and manage your insurance costs.

Here are the key requirements for changing car insurance in Germany:

  1. Termination Letter: When switching car insurance providers or changing your insurance coverage, you must send a termination letter to your current provider. This letter is crucial and should reach them by November 30th, one month before the end of the year.
  2. Vehicle Registration: If you acquire a new car or change your existing vehicle, you can also change your insurance provider. This process entails deregistering the old vehicle and registering the new one in the car register. After these steps, you can easily secure a new insurance policy/provider for your new car, ensuring that your car remains insured.
  3. Required Documents: Certain documents are essential to facilitate the change in your car insurance. These documents may be necessary for terminating your old policy or signing up for a new one:
    • Driver’s license and information regarding your driving experience.
    • Vehicle registration certificate containing details about the manufacturer and model of the car.
    • The last statement of your current insurance policy helps assess your previous insurance record and determine the terms of your new German insurance policy.

Navigate the German car insurance change efficiently by meeting essential requirements. Manage costs and secure comprehensive or partial coverage easily.

Are you planning to get liability insurance in Germany? Check this article: 3 Best Personal Liability Insurance in Germany

Common Reasons Why Vehicle Owners Change Insurance Company

Person looking through documents

The most common reasons vehicle owners change their insurance company in Germany are to save money, get better coverage, change their vehicle, poor customer service, and special offers. It is important to consider these factors when choosing an insurance provider and to shop for the best deal.

Cost

A common reason for changing car insurance in Germany is cost savings. Many car owners opt to switch their insurance provider annually due to fluctuations in the market, often leading to reduced costs with a new contract.

In response to the ongoing cost of living crisis, more people are exploring opportunities to save money, making them consider changing their insurance provider. According to ADAC, approximately one-third of drivers in Germany are contemplating a change this year, seeking ways to mitigate their expenses.

Based on german-visa.org, the average annual car insurance premium in Germany for liability was approximately 258 euros, underlining the significance of cost considerations in car insurance in the country. Car owners frequently reassess their insurance to find Germany’s most budget-friendly car insurance.

Better Deal and Coverage

Improving coverage is another factor for car owners when changing their insurance company.

Those with older vehicles might have opted for the cost-effective third-party liability insurance. However, if they desire more extensive protection for their car, the transition to partial or fully comprehensive insurance becomes necessary.

This adjustment allows the vehicle owner to enhance the scope of their coverage, offering added peace of mind and protection against a broader range of potential risks.

Align insurance changes with vehicle age, value, and owner preferences. Ensure policy fits car models and driving styles.

Change of vehicle

A change in the vehicle itself often necessitates a corresponding change in the car insurance provider. When an individual acquires a new vehicle, the process entails deregistering the old one and registering the new vehicle in the car registry.

Subsequently, the car owner can readily secure a new insurance policy or provider tailored to the specific needs of the new vehicle. This transition is integral to ensuring that the car is appropriately insured in accordance with the vehicle’s characteristics, driving record, and policy price.

Upgrading to a new vehicle or changing make/models prompts car insurance adjustments. Adding a second car also necessitates updates.

Choosing The Right Type of Car Insurance in Germany

Car insurance agent and his client shaking hands

When changing car insurance in Germany, selecting the right type of insurance is essential. The choice of insurance type should align with your specific needs and circumstances. For instance, if you’re looking for more comprehensive coverage or have a new vehicle, opting for full coverage insurance might be the right choice.

Choose car insurance tailored to your needs. It caters to your vehicle, driving record, and preferences for optimal coverage and premiums.

Germany has three main types of car insurance: third-party, partial coverage, and comprehensive.

Liability Insurance

Third-party coverage or liability insurance, commonly called third-party insurance, is a fundamental component of car insurance in Germany. It is a legal requirement; every car owner must have this coverage.

Liability insurance provides financial protection by covering damages to other people, vehicles, or property in the event of an accident caused by the policyholder. If you are at fault in a collision, your liability insurance will cover the costs of the other party’s injuries or property damage. Still, it does not cover your own vehicle.

Generally speaking, liability insurance is the most affordable option. Germany-visa.org says that car owners pay approximately €250 per year for the cheapest car insurance in Germany. This type of insurance is ideal for those who prioritize adhering to legal requirements and are content with basic coverage.

Consider partial or comprehensive coverage for extensive insurance needs, particularly in safeguarding your vehicle against accidents. Tailor your protection accordingly.

Pros of Liability Insurance in Germany:

  • Legal Requirement: Ensures compliance with mandatory car insurance laws, promoting road safety.
  • Affordability: Offers cost-effective coverage with lower premiums, starting at around €250 per year.
  • Basic Coverage: Ideal for those seeking budget-friendly protection for third-party damages and injuries.

Cons of Liability Insurance in Germany:

  • Limited Coverage: Only covers damages to others, leaving your own vehicle uninsured.
  • Lack of Comprehensive Protection: Not suitable for those seeking extensive coverage for their vehicle.
  • Potential Financial Risk: If an at-fault party lacks insurance, you may be exposed to financial risk without additional coverage.

Partial Coverage Insurance

Partial coverage, often called Teilkasko, is a type of car insurance in Germany that offers an intermediate level of protection for your vehicle. While it doesn’t provide the comprehensive coverage of a full insurance policy, partial coverage is designed to cover additional risks beyond the basic liability insurance.

Partial coverage includes protection against risks such as theft, fire, and damage caused by natural disasters.

Ideal for car owners seeking broader coverage than liability insurance. It offers more than basic protection without full insurance. Moreover, it balances cost and coverage, making it an appealing option for many.

The cost of partial coverage can vary based on factors like the car insured and the driver’s history. Typically, with about 4 years of no claims, you can expect to pay around €500 per year for this level of coverage.

Partial coverage suits those who seek a moderate level of protection for their insured vehicle, providing peace of mind against a range of additional risks.

Pros of Partial Coverage Insurance in Germany:

  • Intermediate Protection: Provides coverage against theft, fire, and damage from natural disasters, offering more extensive protection than basic liability insurance.
  • Cost-Effective: Strikes a balance between cost and coverage, making it an attractive option for car owners looking for a moderate level of protection without the higher premiums of full coverage.
  • Peace of Mind: Offers additional security for your insured vehicle, giving you peace of mind in various situations beyond liability insurance.

Cons of Partial Coverage Insurance in Germany:

  • Limited Coverage: This does not provide the comprehensive protection of a full insurance policy, so it may not cover all potential risks and damages.
  • Premium Variability: The cost can vary based on factors like the insured vehicle and driver’s history, potentially leading to higher premiums for some individuals.
  • Individual Needs: Not suitable for those who require the highest level of vehicle protection or want coverage for a broader range of risks.

Comprehensive Coverage

Comprehensive coverage, also known as Vollkasko, is the most extensive form of car insurance in Germany, providing high protection. They go beyond third-party and partial coverage, encompassing damage to the policyholder’s vehicle, even in at-fault accidents or negligence.

Comprehensive coverage is ideal for those who want comprehensive protection for their car and greater peace of mind. It suits car owners who want to safeguard their vehicles from various risks, including accidents and damage caused by their actions.

According to allaboutberlin.com, the average cost of comprehensive coverage in Germany is around €900 per year, making it more expensive than other types of insurance.

For enhanced vehicle security, comprehensive coverage offers invaluable protection. Although pricier, its extensive benefits cater to diverse situations.

Pros of Comprehensive Coverage in Germany:

  • Extensive Protection: Offers the highest level of coverage, including protection against various risks, accidents, and even damage caused by the policyholder’s own actions.
  • Peace of Mind: Car owners have greater peace of mind, knowing that their vehicle is well-insured, even in complex or at-fault situations.
  • Versatility: Suitable for individuals who prioritize the security of their vehicle and are willing to pay a higher premium for comprehensive protection.

Cons of Comprehensive Coverage in Germany:

  • Higher Premiums: Generally more expensive than other types of insurance, with an average cost of around €900 per year, which may be a financial consideration for some car owners.
  • Not Necessary for All: Not essential for those who don’t require comprehensive protection or have older vehicles with lower market value.
  • Deductibles: Comprehensive coverage may have deductibles that the policyholder needs to pay in case of a claim, which can be an added cost.

Which Is The Right Choice for You?

When choosing insurance, one Reddit user’s experience suggests that opting for the most affordable coverage that meets your needs is a wise approach. They utilized comparison platforms like Check24 to identify the best insurance deal and ultimately chose DEVK.

Their satisfaction with the service was further enhanced when they received a Schutzbrief, which proved invaluable when their vehicle required a tow truck.

However, it’s crucial to remember that the right choice still heavily relies on individual preferences. Navigating rental companies, insurance numbers, and EU coverage? Tailor choices to your unique circumstances for the best fit.

This approach applies whether you’re insuring brand-new vehicles or reevaluating your current contract.

My Suggestion

As an expat in Germany, I strongly recommend opting for comprehensive coverage for your vehicle. Here’s why: Comprehensive insurance, or “Vollkasko,” is essential in Germany.

It covers damages to your car, including new cars or used cars, and protects in case of theft and damage from accidents. This is crucial when driving not only in Germany but also in other European countries.

To comply with the legal requirements, having comprehensive coverage is often necessary. When considering a new provider, most companies offer this option. Just provide your license plate number, driver’s license, and contact details, and ensure you’re covered in your regional class.

Don’t forget that comprehensive coverage may also extend to other cars or vehicles you use, providing peace of mind on the road.

Related article: Cheapest Car Insurance in Germany: A Guide

Where to Get The Best Car Insurance In Germany?

In Germany, there are numerous car insurance providers, but selecting the most suitable one is essential. Generally speaking, when seeking the best car insurance in Germany, it’s crucial to consider factors like coverage, customer service, and pricing.

Two top car insurance options worth exploring are CosmosDirekt and Allianz.

CosmosDirket Car Insurances

CosmosDirekt logo

CosmosDirekt provides a range of car insurance options, including third-party, partial, and comprehensive coverage. Third-party insurance fulfills Germany’s legal requirement and covers damage to others, their vehicles, or property, including medical expenses.

Partial coverage offers protection against accidental damage, fire, and theft (excluding vandalism).

Comprehensive insurance is the most extensive, encompassing third parties, fire, theft, and damage to your vehicle or yourself. CosmosDirekt stands out for its cost-effective approach, offering up to 40% savings compared to traditional insurers, according to liveingermany.de.

Pros

  • Wide variety of coverage options.
  • Competitive pricing, even for expats.
  • Ability to use insurance from EU/EFTA countries

Cons:

  • High car insurance costs in Germany, especially for young drivers
  • Time-consuming process to find the right policy

Allianz

Allianz insurance logo

Allianz provides a comprehensive car insurance policy in Germany, offering protection against accidental damage to your vehicle and others, including property and cars.

Notably, their policy features “any-driver cover” and the flexibility to choose your own repair service, setting it apart from other insurers. Allianz is a highly acclaimed provider, with industry awards such as “Insurer of the Year” and “Excellence in Claims.”

Pros:

  1. Comprehensive coverage, including “any-driver cover.”
  2. Unique flexibility in selecting repair service.
  3. Acclaimed with industry awards for excellence and claims handling.

Cons:

  1. Cost may be on par with the market average.
  2. Policy pricing depends on various factors, potentially impacting affordability.
  3. The availability of certain benefits might vary depending on the specific policy chosen.

What Are The Qualities of an Ideal Car Insurance Provider?

Choosing a car insurance provider is straightforward when you know what to seek. Key qualities to consider include legal compliance, versatile coverage options, transparent pricing, efficient claims handling, and excellent customer service.

These factors make selecting an ideal provider a simpler task.

Compliance with Legal Obligations

An ideal car insurance provider prioritizes compliance with legal obligations. This means offering insurance that aligns with the specific legal requirements of the EU country or region where the policyholder resides or intends to drive. This ensures that policyholders are protected and fulfill their legal obligations regarding vehicle insurance.

The provider’s policies should cover the necessary aspects, including liability for damages to others, medical expenses, and other legal requirements.

Versatile Coverage Options

A top-tier insurance provider offers a diverse range of coverage options to meet the diverse needs of its clientele. This versatility extends from basic liability coverage, which fulfills minimum legal requirements, to more comprehensive policies that cater to various scenarios.

Whether a policyholder owns a new car, a used car, or additional vehicles, the provider should have suitable insurance plans that can be tailored to the specific needs of each policyholder.

Transparent and Competitive Pricing

Transparency in pricing is a hallmark of an ideal car insurance provider. Clear explanations on premium calculation, including age, driving history, location, and vehicle type, enhance understanding for policyholders.

Competitive pricing ensures that policyholders receive fair rates for their coverage, offering value for money while meeting their specific insurance requirements.

Efficient Claims Handling

An excellent insurance provider is recognized for its efficient claims processing. When policyholders must file a claim, the provider should have a reputation for minimizing bureaucracy and delays.

Efficient claims handling simplifies the process, reduces policyholder stress, and ensures timely compensation or repairs. It guarantees a hassle-free experience during challenging situations.

Customer Service Excellence

High-quality customer service is a fundamental aspect of an ideal car insurance provider. It encompasses offering policyholders responsive support, guidance, and assistance when needed.

The provider’s customer service team should be readily available to address inquiries, assist with policy management, and help policyholders navigate the complexities of insurance.

Customer service excellence creates a positive and reassuring experience for policyholders, enhancing their overall satisfaction with the insurance provider.

Also read: How Much Does Liability Insurance Cost in Germany: Overview

Final Thoughts About How to Change Car Insurance in Germany

In conclusion, changing car insurance in Germany is a manageable process, allowing you to find the best coverage that suits your needs and budget. Understanding the notice period, comparing rates and policies, and complying with legal requirements are crucial steps in making a successful switch.

Whether you prefer liability, partial coverage, or comprehensive insurance, there are various reputable providers.

If you want to learn more about car insurance in Germany, please click the links in the article to read the full guide. This will also help us keep this blog afloat and provide you with more useful information.

Liked it? Take a second to support Nicholas on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *