The Paperwork Needed for Car Insurance

Image shows a man driving a red van whistling, with dice hanging from his rearview mirror. Text reads:

Image by Nez Riaz © The Balance 2020

Insurance of all kinds requires lots and lots of paperwork. Nearly everything needs to be verified, and even though so many things are going digital, the insurance industry still relies heavily on paperwork. Not only will you need to provide paperwork to get a quote for car insurance, but the insurance company will give you lots of documents when they insure you. Here is a look at all the documents involved.

Vehicle Information

Of course, your insurance company wants to know exactly which vehicle they are insuring. You’ll need to have your VIN, found on the inside of the driver’s doorframe or on the windshield, in order to register.

Current Declaration Page

If you have a current car insurance policy, you will want to provide your current declaration page to the insurance company you are getting a quote from. The declaration page will provide proof that you do have insurance on your car, plus it will let the insurance agent running the quote know what sort of coverage you currently have on your vehicles.

Occasionally, the insurance company you are getting a quote from can pull some of your prior insurance histories without needing additional forms from you. It is in these cases a declaration might not be required, but it is still a good idea. Most of the time your insurance history will not display all of your coverage -- it will only verify you have an active policy.

Social Security Number

You’ll need to provide social security numbers of anyone who is going to be covered by your insurance policy.

Driver’s License

Some insurance carriers may require a copy of your driver’s license. Many companies can input your license number and run your driving record to verify a valid license and any violations.

Bank information

Insurance companies will likely run a credit check before they decide to insure you, and they might check with your bank to make sure you don’t have a history of making late payments. This info will also be necessary if you want to automate your monthly payments.

Voided Check

Setting up EFT for your auto insurance payment is a great way to make your insurance payments. It saves you the trouble of having to remember to log in and make your payment every month, and some insurers may even provide a small discount for using this payment method (or at least save you in a credit card fee, which is not unusual). It is typical for your insurance agent to require a voided check so they can accurately set up your account for withdrawing.

Paperwork for Car Insurance Discount Verification

Perhaps you are a very safe driver or an excellent student, and thus eligible for a discount on your insurance rate -- congratulations! But your reward may start to feel like punishment before it even kicks in because several car insurance discounts require documentation. Plan on getting the following paperwork together if you’d been planning on receiving any of the following discounts.

Proof of Home Ownership

Unfortunately, insurance companies can’t always take your word for it when it comes to discounts. The homeownership discount is a good one and often requires proof. Proof can come from tax documents or a homeowners insurance policy.

Report Card

One thing you can count on when it comes to insurance paperwork is the requirement of proof of good grades for the good student discount. If you are looking to get this discount, you must provide a current report card to verify the student meets the requirements.

Proof of Company Car

Getting a multi-car discount is a great way to save money on car insurance. Verify your insurance company car, and the discount is all yours. Provide the company car's insurance documentation, and you will be all set.

Proof of Membership

Lots of insurance companies offer a membership discount. Depending on the insurance carrier is a member of a credit union or alumni can make you eligible for a discount. Ask your insurance company about a membership discount and provide proof of membership to be qualified.

Paperwork From Your Car Insurance Carrier

Insurance companies not only require a lot of paperwork from you, but they also send you loads of it too. Some companies are offering paperless policies where everything is emailed. Whether the paperwork is mailed or emailed, it is essential you know what the documents entail.

Car Insurance Policy

Your car insurance policy provides you with the documentation of all the legal information regarding your coverage. Car insurance policies can be lengthy and difficult to understand -- but make sure you take the time to understand it fully. It could save you a ton of money and headaches in the long run. After all, they send it to you for a reason!

Declaration Page

The declaration page has all of your pertinent information listed in an easier to read format. The declaration page should be your go-to paper when you have questions about your coverage and cost of insurance.

Proof of Insurance

Keep your proof of insurance in a safe place. It is the only document which verifies the coverage on each vehicle. It will need to be provided to both the Secretary of State and the police when requested -- and usually has the phone numbers you’ll need to call to report the damage to your vehicle or to file a claim.


If you have a car insurance policy, you will receive a statement. The payment plan you selected determines how frequently you receive the invoice.

Updated Declaration Pages

Anytime you make a change to your car insurance policy; paperwork will be sent to you verifying the change. Make a change near your insurance renewal, and you will get double the paperwork. One set for the current term and one set for your renewal term. If you make changes frequently, plan on getting lots of paperwork from your insurance company.

Going Paperless

As the world is increasingly digital, many of these forms will be available as an online-only option. But it’s still important to know the sort of documents you’ll need to provide and what to expect from your insurance provider, whether they come in the form of a crisp white envelope or glowing pixels on your computer screen.