Do I Need Insurance if I Don’t Own a Car?

Written By Charlotte Insurance on March 19, 2020. It has 0 comments.

a Charlotte, NC man in a car with a non-owner auto insurance policy

You don’t have a vehicle, and you’re ready to cancel your auto insurance. Before you make that call, consider a non-owner auto insurance policy instead. Non-owner auto insurance policies are designed for people with a driver’s license but no vehicle. If you drive occasionally, it saves you money and helps protect you from the financial loss of auto accidents when you drive a vehicle you don’t own.

Here’s what you need to know.

Requirements for a Non-Owner Auto Insurance Policy

Each insurance carrier may have slightly different requirements, but in general, you’re eligible to purchase auto insurance as a non-owner, if you meet the following criteria:

  • You have a valid driver’s license.
  • You don’t own a vehicle.
  • You don’t have regular access to a vehicle.

“Regular access” can mean different things to different insurance providers, so it’s important to talk to an insurance agent about what this means for you.

How to Decide if a Non-Owner Auto Insurance Policy is Right for You

The real question isn’t whether you can get a non-owner policy, but if you need one at all. There are several circumstances in which carrying non-owner auto insurance could be a good idea.

  • You drive a friend or family member’s vehicle every so often. In this case, you shouldn’t be living with or be a dependent of your family member in order to qualify.
  • You regularly rent cars but don’t own your own. As a non-owner, you may need to rent a vehicle for personal or business trips. A good non-owner policy prevents you from having to pay for expensive rental insurance.
  • You use car-share services to get from place to place. Some liability coverage may be included in the service, but it won’t be enough in a major accident. A non-owner policy provides extra protection.
  • You want to maintain auto insurance coverage while you wait to buy a new vehicle. Going without insurance for more than 30 days can increase your premiums drastically. To save yourself a big price increase, a non-owner policy may be the solution.

Secondary or Supplemental Insurance

If you borrow someone’s car, you may be thinking you can depend on their insurance coverage in an accident. Yes, their insurance may cover the vehicle in an accident, but you can still be held personally liable if you’re at fault. A non-owner auto insurance policy acts as secondary/supplemental insurance and helps protect you from the financial fall-out of a big accident. This is especially important in accidents where multiple vehicles and people are involved. Liability adds up very quickly in these situations.

The Coverage You Choose Matters

While most basic non-owner auto policies only include liability coverage, you can buy more robust policies that also offer medical payments for your injuries and underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage, as well. You may pay a little more for your auto insurance, but you’ll also be protected when you’re injured or when you’re not at fault for the accident.

At Charlotte Insurance, we’re here to help you maintain auto insurance coverage at a reasonable price, even when you don’t own a vehicle. If you’re occasionally driving another vehicle, a non-owner policy is worth looking into. Contact us today to answer your questions or for a free quote.

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