Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Reviewed by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer Jeffrey Johnson

UPDATED: Jul 14, 2021

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Important facts to know...

  • Having to replace lost or stolen car keys can be expensive, so it is best to check and see if you are covered first
  • If you misplaced your keys on your own, then you will likely be out of luck for coverage for the replacement set
  • If you need help because you are locked out of your vehicle, certain policies will offer roadside assistance

Having your car keys lost or stolen can be a very expensive and frustrating experience.

The cost to replace your keys can be very high, especially if you have an automatic key set or any type of smart function on your keys that must be programmed to your car.

The price that a dealership will charge for the repair or replacement of your keys can vary. If your car keys are stolen, this type of claim could be covered under a comprehensive loss policy.

You may have to pay a deductible, and the cost of the replacement is likely to be higher than the deductible on your policy.

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Filing a Claim for Lost or Stolen Car Keys


If you are positive that your car keys have been stolen and not just lost, you may need to file a police report in order to recover from your insurance company.

Be sure to keep a copy of the official police report for your records in case there is an issue with your insurance company.

If you only have basic auto liability coverage to meet the state law requirements, a claim for lost or stolen keys would not be part of your coverage.

One of the reasons that basic auto insurance policies cost less is that they only cover you for damage that you caused to another car or person in a car crash.

This means that you would not be covered for damage to your own car or incidents like having your keys lost or stolen.

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Comprehensive Coverage for Replacing Your Car Keys

Many drivers choose to purchase optional coverage, such as a comprehensive insurance policy, to protect themselves in situations where they are at fault for the damage to their car.

A comprehensive auto policy covers things that happen that are not a result of a car crash. Things like theft and vandalism in our part of what is covered under a comprehensive policy.

Even though claims for theft may be covered, you still want to take measures to protect your car because you will at least have to pay a deductible in order to have your claim filed and settled.

When you were shopping around for a comprehensive insurance policy, be sure to check into how the insurance carrier is known for handling claims.

No one wants to make a claim under their insurance policy, but if you have to in the future, you want to be assured that your insurance company will handle the claim in a responsible way.

Roadside Assistance for Keys Locked in Your Car

Some insurance companies may require that you have a specific rider on your policy to cover the cost of replacing lost or stolen car keys. This specific coverage would be listed in your policy agreement.

For other insurance companies, you may be able to sign up for a roadside assistance program that will come as additional cost with your coverage.

In the event that you lock your keys inside your car, you may be able to get immediate assistance covered under your insurance policy to get your car unlocked.

For many car insurance companies, if you carry this roadside assistance service, there is no additional cost to you for having your car unlocked in an emergency.

The Bottom Line on Filing a Claim for Lost Car Keys

If you simply lost your car keys, you are likely not covered by your insurer unless you have a specific rider in your policy for that incident.

If your keys are stolen from your vehicle, then you may be able to recover from your comprehensive policy.

Your policy documents are the best source for figuring out what types of loss could be covered by a claim. If you file through your comprehensive coverage, be prepared to pay the amount of your deductible.

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