A learners permit allows you to drive, so you may wonder whether you need personal automobile insurance in order to be protected, but before that you need to understand car insurance it very well. Generally, the answer to this question is no: you do not need to buy your own personal automobile insurance policy, or to be added to your family’s policy, until you become a licensed driver.
Personal Automobile Insurance and Learners Permits
When you get your learner’s permit, you aren’t yet licensed to drive. You are restricted to driving your vehicle only when another licensed driver is present. Since you aren’t yet a full driver, you aren’t a regular driver of vehicles and you can’t have your own car. As a result, you don’t need to buy personal automobile insurance. You will be covered under the insurance of whomever you are driving with. So, for example, if your mother is teaching you to drive and you get into an accident in her car, her automobile insurance will cover you, even if you aren’t listed as a driver on the family policy.
However, once you get your actual license, requirements change. At this point, you are a licensed driver and able to drive independently on your own. Insurance companies now assume you will be making more regular use of the family vehicle and will even be one of the primary drivers of that vehicle. Therefore, your parents should add you to their insurance policy (or you should buy your own personal automobile insurance policy) as soon as you become a licensed driver.
For as long as you live with your parents, you can simply be listed as an additional driver on their policy once you get your license. This is usually cheaper than buying your own personal automobile insurance policy, or you can learn what is the actual meaning of cheap car insurance. You can even insure a vehicle that you primarily drive under their policy, as long as their name is on the title.
If, however, you buy your own car and the title is in your name, you will need to buy your own personal automobile insurance policy for that vehicle to buy, register and drive the car. In this case, your parents may still need to keep you listed as an additional driver for their cars if you have access to their vehicles. When you move out and are no longer under your parents roof or considered a dependent, you will normally need to purchase your own individual personal automobile insurance policy as well.
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