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

UPDATED: Jul 14, 2021

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In a nutshell...

  • When payment is remitted for a new auto insurance policy, a proof of insurance card is usually mailed to you. Proof of insurance is usually a requirement to legally operate a vehicle on public roads.
  • If you do not have a policy card or a binder of insurance, you may be able to get it online or through a smartphone application.
  • If you cannot find your auto insurance card, you can call your auto insurance company. If you do not know who you are insured with, a state agency may be able to help you.
  • Most drivers are insured through the major auto insurance companies. You could try calling those companies on their 24-hour lines to search for a policy in your name.

Finding out the name of your auto insurance company is a fairly easy task. You can look on the front of your proof of auto insurance card or read the documentation sent to you in the mail to get the name of the company that your auto insurance is with.

A common place to put proof of insurance documents is in the glove box or center console of your vehicle. You may also have the card in your wallet.

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Tracking Down Your Auto Insurance Company


It is always a good idea to make sure that you know who your auto insurance company is because you are legally required to purchase and maintain a certain level of auto insurance in order to drive.

Even if you purchase auto insurance coverage when you first register a vehicle, you can be in violation of your state’s laws if you do not continue to maintain a certain level of coverage for auto insurance as you continue to drive the vehicle.

You will receive a proof of auto insurance card from the company when you take out an auto insurance policy. This document is important to keep with you while driving.

Some of the common places to store your proof of insurance card are the glove box or center console. Also, you may want to consider carrying the card in your wallet in case you are driving someone else’s vehicle and get pulled over.

If you cannot show proof of auto insurance coverage, you can be hit with some serious fines and penalties. You could even have your car impounded or driver’s license suspended in some states.

To keep yourself from having to deal with these consequences, check with your insurance company to make sure that your coverage is in force and request an additional copy of a proof of auto insurance card so that you can keep it with you while driving a vehicle on public roads.

Your auto insurance company will be happy to supply you with another proof of auto insurance card if you lost your original one.

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Contact Your State DMV for Current Policy Information


In order to make sure that all drivers are meeting the requirements under state law to maintain auto insurance coverage, the state DMV may receive information from the auto insurance company whenever a driver signs up for a new policy or is dropped from coverage.

A phone call to your state DMV can help you track down information on your auto insurance company.

If there is no current auto insurance information listed for you with the state, then you should act quickly to get the required coverage.

It is a good idea to never have a lapse in auto insurance coverage because this can prevent you from having to pay a higher rate for auto insurance.

When you request a quote from an auto insurance company, they will generally ask you if you have current auto insurance coverage. If you are unsure, a representative can often search private databases of insurance for you.

If your auto insurance coverage is inactive, canceled or expired, you will be considered a higher risk driver to insure and will likely have to deal with paying a higher rate for auto insurance.

What to Do If You Can’t Get Auto insurance

If you happen to find out that you do not have auto insurance and are turned away from auto insurance companies that you have requested rate quotes from, you are still obligated to follow state laws regarding insurance.

In this case, it may take a little more effort to find auto insurance coverage, but it is possible.

Every state has what is called a residual market, which is basically a state-sponsored insurance company. Rates are higher for this coverage, but it may be your last resort.

If you are considered a higher risk driver to insure, there are some private auto insurance companies that specialize in providing this type of coverage. The rates are typically much higher.

The good news is, however, if you are able to establish a good driving record after a certain period of time, you may be eligible to get auto insurance through a traditional auto insurance company and pay a much lower rate.

Also, if you improve your credit score during this time, that could help you eventually get a lower rate for auto insurance.

Recap on Locating Your Auto Insurance Company

Consult documents sent by your auto insurance company to find out what company currently insures you.

You might also have payment records from your bank that indicate who you are covered under. If all else fails, you can call major auto insurance companies to see if there is a policy that exists in your name.

Make sure you’re always with the right company — enter your zip below and start comparing car insurance quotes from top providers!