What is a non-owner car insurance policy?

Non-owner car insurance covers drivers who don't own a personal vehicle but borrow one more than 10 times in a month. Non-owner car insurance rates are similar to the average personal policy, but you can compare non-owner car insurance quotes online to guarantee you're paying a fair price. Enter your ZIP code below to compare quotes and find the best non-owner car insurance coverage in your state.

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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.

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Written by Laura Berry
Former Insurance Agent Laura Berry

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...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP® Joel Ohman

UPDATED: Jun 2, 2022

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Here's what you need to know...

  • A non-owners car insurance policy is useful if you often drive cars you don’t own
  • You only want this type of insurance if you drive someone else’s vehicle more than 10 times a month
  • A teen can purchase a non-owners insurance policy with minimum coverage
  • Most insurance companies offer this coverage at a premium that is similar to a regular policy

If you don’t own a car, and you want to purchase auto insurance, you can get this coverage by purchasing a non-owners car insurance policy. This type of coverage is beneficial for many reasons that will be discussed below and can ensure that you have the right amount of insurance no matter what vehicle you happen to be driving.

Anyone can purchase a non-owners car insurance policy, but the question is, why should they? The most common answer to that question is that a person frequently drives vehicles that do not belong to them.

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Why purchase a non-owners car insurance policy?

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If you travel a great deal or drive a company car on a regular basis, then you may be driving vehicles you don’t own. In both of these cases, having a non-owner car insurance policy can be handy, especially if you cause an accident.

If you are driving a company car, your company’s insurance company will have a policy on that vehicle. If, however, you cause an accident and your insurance doesn’t cover the total cost of damages or medical care, then you can become responsible for that cost, especially if the accident was caused by careless driving.

Having a secondary policy in place can end up saving you a lot of money.

Rental car companies do offer you the choice of purchasing car insurance for your vehicle when you rent it. If you rent vehicles on a regular basis, however, it can be costly. Even if you work for a company that pays for those costs, they might be willing to pay for a non-owner insurance policy instead, as it will save the company money.

If you own your own vehicle, then you have to have car insurance for it. Also, many policies cover you no matter what vehicle you are driving, so before you buy non-owner insurance, check with your insurance company to see what they cover when you drive other vehicles.

In a majority of cases, this coverage will not extend to company-owned vehicles. However, it does cover rental cars and borrowed vehicles if you have that coverage in the first place.

If you don’t own your own vehicle, and you borrow a car from a friend on a regular basis, then having a non-owner car insurance policy is the responsible thing to do. Their insurance policy may or may not cover unlisted drivers in the vehicle, but even if they do, you don’t want to put them in a position where you have an accident and their insurance doesn’t cover all the costs associated with that accident.

Another consideration is medical care. If you don’t have health insurance, and you have an auto accident, your non-owner insurance policy can cover some of your medical costs. This coverage only applies if you specifically purchase personal injury protection (PIP), but it is a great backup option to have just in case, and it is affordable too.

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What about teen drivers?

Many states have laws in place regarding teenagers and driver’s licenses. In North Carolina, for example, before teens can get their driver’s license, they are required to have auto insurance even if they don’t own a car. A non-owner insurance policy is an excellent choice for a teen — or even a young adult — in this situation.

For parents who don’t want to add their teen to their auto insurance policy because they don’t intend to let them drive the family car, this can end up offering big savings on insurance costs.

Instead of adding a teen onto a comprehensive insurance policy, for example, the teen can purchase a non-owner policy with minimum coverage so that they can meet state requirements.

Remember that if you let your child regularly drive your vehicle and he/she has an accident, it is very likely that your insurance company won’t pay the costs associated with the accident if they learn your teen is a regular driver and wasn’t listed on your policy.

Thus, there are several situations in which a non-owner insurance policy makes sense.

Should you purchase a non-owners car insurance policy?

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Not everyone who rents a car or drives a company vehicle needs non-owner car insurance. You only want this coverage if you drive someone else’s vehicle more than ten times a month.

If you only borrow or rent every once in a while, then you should talk to your current insurance carrier and ask them to include coverage for you on borrowed or rental vehicles if you don’t already have this option on your insurance policy.

If they don’t provide you with that option, or they want to increase your rates too much, then you should consider switching insurance companies.

You aren’t obligated to stay with an insurance company simply because you have a six-month or one-year policy with them.

Also, if you find that you are borrowing the same person’s vehicle repeatedly, then you may want to ask them to add you as a driver and agree to partially pay for their insurance costs.

If you don’t think they have enough coverage, you can increase it and pay the difference as well, which ensures that you are financially responsible for the other person’s vehicle.

This option will be much less expensive than purchasing long-term car insurance because you aren’t paying for the entire policy yourself.

How to get a cheap non-owner policy

To get a quote for non-owner insurance , and to purchase coverage, you need only provide some basic personal information, along with your driver‘s license number and a method of payment (such as a credit card).

Though most major auto insurance companies offer non-owner policies, none offer non-owner insurance quotes online. Even GEICO, renowned for the ease of its online process, requires you to call an agent to get a quote.

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Where do I buy a non-owners car insurance policy?

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Although this type of policy isn’t as common as others, most insurance companies do offer it as an option and usually at similar premiums as a regular policy. The costs might be higher simply because they have no car associated with the policy to offer discounts for safety features and such.

Most insurance companies only offer liability non-owners auto insurance. If you are looking for more comprehensive coverage, look more extensively for auto insurance companies with this option. If you can’t find one, speak with an independent agent; Agents will go out of their way to find the options you need and will tell you if you can purchase those options in your state.

To get the best price on your non-owner car insurance policy, you will need to shop around.

What is non-owner SR-22 insurance?

Non-owner SR-22 insurance is a type of car insurance for drivers who don’t own a car but are required to have SR-22 insurance.

What if I rent a car?

Rental car agency is usually required, by law, to provide the state minimum liability coverage for their cars. Check if damage to a rental car would be covered by your credit card’s rental car insurance.

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Do you require non – owner insurance for Car2Go or Zip car?

Yes it can be used to satisfy a state’s car insurance requirements, allowing you to use your own coverage if you do not have a personal vehicle but drive using a car-sharing service, rental cars, or borrowed cars.

 The Bottom Line

Non-owner insurance, also called non-driver insurance, provides liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage when you are driving a vehicle you do not personally own. If you’re involved in an accident with another car and found to be at fault, your non-owner auto insurance policy will protect you from lawsuits, just like a regular auto insurance policy.

Aside from liability coverage, which pays for injuries and property damage to the other party if you’re in an accident, a non-owner auto insurance policy can also include:

  • Medical Payments or Personal Injury Protection Coverage
  • Uninsured or Under insured Motorist Liability Insurance

Collision and Comprehensive insurance will not be offered under non-owners policy.

It ensures a certain level of coverage every time you drive, so you don’t have to worry whether the car owner’s insurance policy will cover you or if its liability limits will be too low.

Fortunately for you, this process is much easier than it sounds. By clicking on the link on this page, you will access a free car insurance quote tool that will show you which insurance companies have the best non-owner policy rates for you!

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References:

  1. https://www.progressivecommercial.com/coverages/non-owned-vehicle/
  2. https://www.nationwide.com/car-insurance-policy.jsp
  3. https://www.dairylandinsurance.com/auto/Non-Owner-Insurance
  4. https://www.allstate.com/tools-and-resources/car-insurance/personal-injury-protection-insurance.aspx
  5. https://www.thebalance.com/what-is-non-owners-insurance-527421

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