Can I Get Car Insurance Without a Car?

Can you get car insurance without a car? Many are surprised to discover that people can and do buy car insurance even if they don’t own a vehicle. It’s called non-owner car insurance. Typically, it’s much cheaper than an ordinary car insurance policy. It gives you added protection when driving a vehicle – even if you don’t own that vehicle.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insurance...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years

UPDATED: Nov 12, 2020

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It seems like an unusual question: can you buy car insurance without a car? Can you buy car insurance even if you don’t own a vehicle? Today, we’re explaining everything you need to know about non-owner car insurance and getting car insurance without a car.

Yes, You Can Get Car Insurance Without a Car

Many are surprised to discover that people can and do buy car insurance even if they don’t own a vehicle.

It’s called non-owner car insurance. Typically, it’s much cheaper than an ordinary car insurance policy. It gives you added protection when driving a vehicle – even if you don’t own that vehicle.

Typically, you would buy non-owner car insurance if you frequently drive a vehicle that isn’t your own. If you frequently drive a friend’s car, for example, then you might benefit from having your own car insurance.

If your friend’s car is insured, then that insurance will protect you when driving that vehicle (assuming you have the owner’s permission to drive the vehicle). If you get into an accident, then the vehicle owner’s insurance will cover damages up to the limits of the vehicle owner’s policy.

However, the vehicle owner’s standard insurance might not have enough coverage. The insurance policy might be a minimum liability plan, for example. This could expose you to significant financial risk. If you’re involved in a serious accident, then you might end up paying thousands of dollars out of pocket. For accidents with serious injuries, the injured parties might even sue you, seize your assets, or force you to declare bankruptcy.

For all of these reasons, it may be in your best interest to buy car insurance even if you don’t own a vehicle.

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Reasons to Buy Car Insurance Without a Car

There are several reasons to buy car insurance without a vehicle. Two of the primary reasons why people purchase car insurance without a car include:

Let’s say you travel abroad for a year. You sell your car. You no longer have a vehicle, but you continue paying for car insurance because you want to avoid a lapse in coverage. Insurance companies dislike lapses in coverage. If you cancel your car insurance for a year, then you might be penalized when you try to renew it. This can cause insurance rates to rise by 50% to 100%. In many cases, you’d come out ahead by maintaining car insurance coverage – even though you don’t currently own a vehicle.

High-Risk Drivers Might Purchase Car Insurance Without Owning a Vehicle

There’s another group of drivers that routinely purchase car insurance without owning a vehicle: high-risk drivers.

If you have been convicted of multiple DUIs or at-fault incidents, then you might have to file SR-22 or FR-44 insurance with your state’s DMV. In this situation, you can buy basic liability insurance to fulfill the liability coverage requirement. This allows you to keep your driver’s license regardless of whether you own a vehicle.

What Does Non-Owner Car Insurance Cover?

Non-owner car insurance will cover damages you inflict on other people and property. If you’re driving a legally insured vehicle, then the vehicle’s insurance policy will pay first up to the limits of the policy. Then, if there are still damages leftover, then your non-owner car insurance policy will cover the rest, up to the limits of that policy.

Typically, non-owner car insurance comes with no deductibles.

Non-owner insurance policies focus specifically on bodily injury and property damage liability coverage. Bodily injury coverage covers the medical expenses of anyone injured in an accident. Property damage liability coverage covers damage to vehicles and other property.

Your non-owner car insurance might also come with medical payments coverage or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Depending on your aversion to risk and your budget, you might want to pay higher premiums for better coverage.

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What Does Non-Owner Car Insurance Not Cover?

Non-owner car insurance doesn’t cover everything. Certain insurance policies are not available on non-owner car insurance, including:

These policies are not available because there is no vehicle attached to the policy.

Some Non-Owner Car Insurance Policies Cover Rental Vehicles, While Others Do Not

Some non-owner car insurance policies cover you while driving rental vehicles.

Other policies, however, specifically exclude rental vehicles. Make sure you check the fine print of your non-owner car insurance policy before you rent a vehicle.

Conclusion: Compare Quotes for Non-Owner Car Insurance Today

Non-owner car insurance is available at a cheaper price than ordinary car insurance. That’s because non-owner car insurance primarily covers the bare minimum insurance requirements, including bodily injury liability coverage and property damage liability coverage. It does not cover damage to your own vehicle.

Yes, you can buy car insurance without a car. Compare quotes online today to discover how affordable non-owner car insurance can be.

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