You can register a car without insurance in California. But you’ll need to follow up with documentation proving you’re insured within 30 days, or your registration will be suspended..
In California, you are required to have $15,000 in bodily injury liability coverage, up to $30,000 per accident, along with $5,000 in liability coverage for property damage. You have 10 days from the date of purchase to register a vehicle in the state of California, but you can’t drive the car without insurance.
To register a car in California, you need the following documentation:
California certificate of title (signed by both buyers and sellers)
Odometer disclosure (vehicles less than 10 years old)
Completed application for title or registration
Vehicle verification by DMV employee (if required)
The answer is usually no since there are only eight states that allow you to register your car in a different state than your license. In those eight states, the only requirement is that you can prove residency in the state where you register your car. You are not obligated to register with one state over the other, and in some states, you can even have dual registration. But it’s important to know what different states require so you can be sure you’re following the law.… read full answer
States Where Your License and Car Registration Don't Have to Match
In all the remaining states, however, it’s a little trickier. If you’re permanently moving to one of the remaining states, you’re required to get a new driver’s license as well as new registration for your car. So your license and registration need to match each other.
But if you’re only in town temporarily, you might still need to reregister your car – while keeping your current driver’s license. In that case, your license and registration would not match. The laws vary, but some drivers who plan to stay in a state for as little as a month may need to register for a “non-resident” permit instead.
Either way, you need to address your registration within 10-90 days of arriving in one of these states, even if you don’t plan to stay there. You might be tempted to procrastinate or keep your old registration until it expires. However, leaving your car registered in a state where you don’t live (anymore) is illegal in most situations. You risk a fine, license suspension, and denied insurance coverage if you get in an accident.
When and How to Register Your Car in a New State
Check your state’s laws to find out how much time you have to register your car. When you go to register, bring your driver’s license, proof of insurance, and your vehicle’s title. Some states require proof of residency (such as a copy of your lease, bank statement, or a utility bill) or further proof of identity (like a passport or military ID). Verify your state’s requirements beforehand to make sure you bring all the necessary documents. And don’t forget to bring your car - it will need to be inspected, too.
You’ll pay a registration fee for your car, as well as any state taxes. Later, you’ll get your new license plate(s), proof of registration, and registration stickers in the mail.
You can only buy car insurance across state lines (i.e. in a state other than where you live) if your car is also registered in that other state. Most states want your car to be registered where you have your permanent home address. But you may be eligible to register and insure a car in a different state than the one you currently live in if you are a part-time resident. For example, this could apply to college students, military families, and people with homes in more than one state. In addition, some states—including Nebraska, Georgia and Missouri—require you to register your car if you're in the state for at least 30 days.… read full answer
College students who attend school in a different state from their parents’ residence (which is generally considered a student’s permanent residence) may or may not need to buy a new policy. It depends on the laws of the state in which their school is located. For example, people going to college in Nevada are specifically allowed to maintain out-of-state registration and insurance, while Connecticut students are not. Some states, like Massachusetts, allow out-of-state students to maintain their primary home-state registration and insurance, but require them to register the vehicle with local police.
Most states allow members of the military to keep their car registration and insurance in the state in which they maintain legal residence. However, states’ residency laws vary, and you should verify your particular situation with your insurance company whenever you are re-deployed.
People who split their time between two homes generally should register and insure their vehicles in whichever place they spend the most time. For example, if you live in New York for eight months of the year but spend four winter months in Florida, you would buy insurance in New York. That policy would cover you even while you're at your Florida home. Be aware, however, that if Florida is your secondary state, your insurance policy—no matter where you buy it—must include Florida’s mandatory minimum insurance coverage.
Also keep in mind that if you own a vehicle that stays at your secondary home year-round, you are required to insure it in that state.
You can get car insurance without a license from some small local insurers. To get car insurance without a license you need to exclude yourself as a driver on the policy and list a licensed family member, friend, or caretaker as the primary driver. It’s possible, with some effort, to insure your car so someone else can drive it.… read full answer
How to Get Car Insurance Without a License
1. Contact regional insurance companies or a local independent agent.
Focusing on smaller companies will give you the best chance of finding coverage as an unlicensed driver. Most national companies will not insure you without a license. The risk is too high, in their eyes, that you will drive the car yourself.
2. List yourself as an excluded driver on the policy.
This is a legal statement that, as an unlicensed driver, you are not going to drive the car. Note that if you do drive illegally and get into an accident, the insurance company will not cover any claims. If you get or regain your license while the car is insured, you must notify your insurance company and provide your new license number before you are legally insured on the policy.
3. List the person who will operate the vehicle the most as the primary driver on the policy.
This can be a spouse, family member, roommate, caretaker or friend. They may live with you or not. They must, of course, have a valid driver’s license.
4. List the primary driver on your registration as part-owner.
Try this step if you can’t find any company that will insure the car for you without a license. There should be no trouble insuring the car with a licensed driver listed as co-owner.
Why You Might Need Car Insurance Without a License
Your license is suspended and you need to file an SR-22 or FR-44 to reinstate it
You only have a learner’s permit
You are insuring a collectible vehicle that you won’t drive
You own a car that is driven by a caregiver or chauffeur
You need to co-sign a policy for an underage driver
If no one is going to drive the car, but you want to protect it against accidental damage while it’s stored, you have the option of purchasing comprehensive-only or parked-car coverage. You will have to cancel your registration and turn in your plates to do this, but it is cheaper than buying a policy that also offers liability coverage. This type of insurance is offered by many national firms such as Allstate and State Farm.
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