Does car insurance have to be in the registered owner’s name?

The registered name for car insurance must be the same as the titleholder for a loan. The name for your car insurance quote must be the name of the primary driver. You can add any other name to your car insurance policy to cover drivers in your household.

Free Car Insurance Comparison

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

A former insurance producer, Laura understands that education is key when it comes to buying insurance. She has happily dedicated many hours to helping her clients understand how the insurance marketplace works so they can find the best car, home, and life insurance products for their needs.

Full Bio →

Written by

Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident car insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one car insurance company and cannot guarantee quotes from any single company.

Our partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from top car companies please enter your ZIP code above to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

Here's what you need to know...

  • If the car has a loan, the titleholder must have insurance in his or her name.
  • Remember to list all drivers in your household on your insurance policy.
  • Find an insurance company that offers coverage that is right for your unique family situation.

Finance companies dictate that an auto insurance policy must be in the same name as the car loan holder. These companies require a full coverage policy in the name of the title holder as a means of lessening the lending risk.

If the driver in possession of the car loan finds himself without a full coverage auto insurance policy, he will also find himself in breach of contract with his lender. Repercussions can range from financial penalties to a visit from the repo man.

Careful compliance with the terms of your loan, as well your car insurance policy, will ensure a smooth process when buying and driving a new car. Read on to learn more and then enter your zip for a free car insurance comparison!

List All Drivers on the Auto Insurance Policy


The driving record of the primary driver on the auto insurance policy has the biggest impact on policy premiums. However, the record of each driver listed on the policy will be taken into consideration as well. Younger drivers and older drivers are likely to increase premiums.

While having a teenager or a 75+-year-old driver on one’s policy is guaranteed to cost more, deciding not to list a licensed driver residing in your household is not a smart or responsible option.

If a family member—or non-family member living in the same household—who is not listed on the car’s policy gets in an auto accident, the insurance company may be able to deny coverage to the unlisted party.

The policyholder is then liable for any property damage or injuries.

Sometimes, though, the insurance company will extend coverage to the non-listed driver, but will tack on an additional charge that will make the policyholder accountable for the amount he should have been paying all along for listing the teenager or elderly driver on the policy.

Free Car Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap car insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

The Issue of Permissive Drivers


Car insurance generally follows the car, not the driver. It is not practical or possible to list every person with the potential to get behind the wheel of any given car. Therefore, car insurance companies grant coverage to what they call “permissive drivers” as part of each policy.

A permissive driver has permission from the car’s owner/car insurance policy holder to operate the vehicle.

But if the “permissive driver” is actually a family member or household member who should have been listed on the policy, coverage could be denied or handled in the manner illustrated in the previous section.

Find a Personalized Auto Insurance Policy for the Family

"Helpful tips" written on chalkboard

Here are some things you can do to help find the insurance company and coverage that fits your needs best:

Use the internet

The process of shopping around for an auto insurance policy has been simplified with the advent of the Internet. Users can compare quotes with a convenient on-line tool that presents several car insurance quotes, with each company’s offering clearly lined up against the others.

Drivers can see how different auto insurance companies weigh a variety of factors, including location, demographics, and auto specifications.

Each company utilizes its own formula, a fact that supports the use of a quote comparison tool to find the right company for one’s personal circumstances.

In a simplified example, one company may charge higher premiums to the owners of all two-door vehicles while another company does not. All other factors being equal, it may be wise for a driver to choose the policy that does not immediately assess a financial penalty just for being in possession of that kind of car.

Take note of factors in addition to cost

Insurance coverage is made up of many components, and while cost is one of the most important factors, it does not mean the others should be overlooked. Additional things to look for include:

  • Other benefits
  • The reputation of the auto insurance provider
  • All the fine print that goes along with the policy

– Weigh the cost/benefit of changing your deductible

Another factor that is often discussed when it comes to the auto insurance policy is the deductible.

A deductible is what the insured must pay toward a claim before the insurance company steps in. The yearly premium will be less if the deductible is more.

Find and Apply for Car Insurance Discounts

Finally, it is a good course of action to look into all possible discounts for your situation. Features that can lead to discounts include:

  • Safety and anti-theft mechanisms
  • The use of Electronic Payment Transfer (EFT) to pay the bill
  • A multiple-car policy

The quote comparison tool is an invaluable service in this area as well. Keying in personal information (in a secure application) will result in detailed quotes from many providers.

By including all the elements that can make you eligible for discounts, you will be able to pinpoint the policy that offers the most savings.

Finding the best car insurance quote has never been easier. To find the rate that is most appropriate for you and your family, compare quotes now!

Free Car Insurance Comparison

Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap car insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption