Let’s say your parents buy a brand-new car and they give you their old car as a graduation present. And, let’s say you are super busy and don’t want to take the time to register the vehicle in your name. You just want to get online, find a decent and low-cost auto insurance company, and be on your way.
Is this possible? Can you insure a vehicle that is not in your name? Read on to find out.
Can You Insure a Car That is Not Registered to You?
The best answer is maybe. Mostly it depends on where you live. This is because car insurance laws are set at the state level, not the federal level. So, each state has its own auto insurance rules and regulations. And while these laws are similar between many states throughout the country, they are definitely not the same.
Know Your State’s Laws
To protect yourself from breaking the law and finding yourself up against fines and penalties, make sure you visit your state’s insurance website or call your department of motor vehicles. Insurance companies can also help you understand your own state’s laws.
If you live in a state that requires insurance and registration to match, you are out of luck. These states do not allow you to insure a car unless you are listed as an owner.
If you live in a state where you can insure a car you don’t own, it could be as simple as listing the owner of the car as an insurable interest on your policy. This means the owner will still maintain some responsibility and lowers the insurance company’s risk.
Alternatives to Insuring a Car You Don’t Own
If your state prohibits you from insuring a car that’s not yours, there are other options. You will have to work with the vehicle owner on these, but they do allow you to get your car registered and insured to drive safely and legally on the roads.
Get the car registered in your name – It may take a little time and effort to visit your DMV but putting the car’s registration in your name will solve all your problems. In some states you must have insurance in place before you register a car, so the actual registration may be your last step.
Have the owner add you to their policy – If it is not possible for you to register the vehicle, and you live in a state where the vehicle must be in your name to insure it, your only option may be to have the owner add you to their auto insurance policy.
Don’t Forget to Shop Around
When you’re ready to get that new policy, don’t forget that the best way to get an understanding of your rate is to shop around for auto insurance. The InsuranceWins form can help you gather quotes from major carriers, so you know you’re getting the right amount of insurance at the best price, even if the car is not in your name.