Here’s how to avoid making these mistakes with your car, health and phone, when moving out-of-state….
Since I’m facing the real possibility of moving to Michigan (due to my husband’s job), I discovered some things most people don’t consider when relocating to a new state. I’m sharing my tips with you on how to avoid the following mistakes:
MISTAKE #1 – Not changing the address on your driver’s license and updating vehicle registration, title paperwork and car insurance
Commonly overlooked when moving, an address change on your vehicle license, registration, and title paperwork is required within 30 days. However, I discovered that there is no grace period in Michigan—You need to register your vehicle immediately.
As soon as I establish residency in the state of Michigan, I would need to visit my local Secretary of State office to apply for a new driver’s license, update my vehicle registration and title paperwork. But before that, I would have to provide proof of no-fault car insurance in Michigan (because my out-of-state policy would not be acceptable).
The general rule-of-thumb is that in order to become a Michigan resident, one must reside there for at least 30 days or more; However, there is no such standard actually stated in Michigan law. If I got stopped by the police and was found to be still driving with an out-of-state license, I would likely have to post bond of up to $100 or surrender my license temporarily (to insure them that payment of the fine would be made).
So, make the necessary address changes and update your vehicle’s insurance policy right away, and you can save yourself some headaches and some money in the long run.
MISTAKE # 2 – Not requesting a personal hard copy of medical records and referral for new medical provider (for follow-up visits, testing and Rx renewals)
Moving to a new state is hard enough, but make things easier on yourself by having important documents with you, like a copy of your own medical records. Even those these files contain your private and personal information, technically these records belong to your doctor. With the help of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), you now legally have the right as a patient to access a copy of your own files. This is one thing you might want to take care of at least 30 days before you move, as it can take at least that long to compile your medical records.
Because I take medication that requires constant monitoring, blood tests and prescription refills, I will need to find a new doctor in Michigan to coordinate my follow-up care. After requesting a copy of your personal medical files, the next logical step would be to ask for a doctor referral–in order to continue medical care as laid out by your current physician. Knowing your patient rights and the transfer process involved in switching medical providers will help make your move easier…in a task that’s often overlooked.
MISTAKE #3 – Not checking with current cellphone provider about coverage area and roaming charges with an out-of-state move
To avoid the possibility of roaming charges by moving to Michigan, I visited my cellphone provider’s website to see if I needed to adjust anything with my current plan. My service and billing address would need to be changed to the new Michigan address, which would incur appropriate state taxes for each line. Although it depends on your cellphone provider and service plan, you may likely be covered under a nationwide plan and pay no additional costs. So, don’t make a mistake by not checking with your cellphone provider before moving out-of-state, and know ahead of time what your plan actual covers.