You don’t need non-owner car insurance in Texas to drive someone else’s car if the owner is insured. Expenses from an accident will generally be covered under the vehicle owner’s insurance policy. However, if the owner is uninsured, you can be ticketed for driving their car and can even lose your license if you get into an accident. Even if the owner is insured, you are basing your protection on the level of insurance they’ve chosen. You may want to have your own non-owner policy if you borrow a car or cars regularly, for the security of knowing you’re adequately protected against liability.
Non-owner insurance is available to Texans who have a valid driver’s license (or can get one within 30 days by obtaining insurance), but who don’t own a vehicle or have regular access to one owned by someone in their household. If you will be borrowing a car from someone who lives with you, they’re required to list you as a driver on their own policy, and non-owner insurance doesn’t generally apply.
In Texas, a non-owner policy will cover at least the state minimum liability insurance: $30,000 in bodily injury liability per person, up to a total of $60,000 per accident, and $25,000 in property damage coverage. However, these limits are modest. You can set higher limits to enhance your protection.
Non-owner insurance does not cover you or the car you are driving, so coverages such as collision, comprehensive, rental car, roadside assistance, and medical payment are not available with it. Nevertheless, there are several situations in which non-owner insurance can be beneficial in Texas.
When to consider non-owner car insurance in Texas:
- You regularly borrow someone else’s car.
- You belong to a ridesharing service such as Zipcar and want coverage beyond what the service includes.
- You’re temporarily between cars and want to avoid the increase in insurance rates that can occur after a coverage lapse.
- You need SR-22 insurance in order to get a suspended license reinstated.
- You rent cars frequently. In Texas, car rental companies must provide a minimum level of liability coverage as part of the contract, but you may want more.
In Texas, a non-owner car insurance policy will cost you about $500 per year on average. This price is near the middle among U.S. states. Prices vary among companies, however, just as with regular car insurance. You will need to shop around for the best deals.
Be aware that most companies in Texas do not offer online quotes for this specialty type of car insurance. You will need to call insurers directly or speak to an agent to get quotes for your individual situation.
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