Auto Insurance
6 min read

“Can I Add Someone To My Car Insurance Who Doesn’t Live With Me?”

Published on
May 11, 2023

Having shared ownership of a car can save you money. However, you may need to add a non-resident (someone who doesn’t live with you) to your car insurance if they are also driving your car or will occasionally borrow it. Adding a non-resident driver to an existing policy can seem intimidating if you haven’t done it before—but don't stress!

We've compiled all the necessary information in one place to make adding this additional driver manageable. Read on to find out what steps you should take when adding a non-resident to your car insurance policy.

Why You Might Want to Add a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

One reason to do so is if you share a car with a non-resident, such as a foreign exchange student or a family member who doesn't live in the country. Another scenario is when a non-resident frequently borrows your car, which could be a friend, a relative, or a co-worker who lives in another state or country—who tends to visit you many times throughout the year.

Adding them to your car insurance policy can help ensure their safety and ‌your own peace of mind while driving your vehicle. Lastly, if a non-resident frequently joins you on trips, adding them to your policy may be beneficial, especially if they plan to drive your car or rent one using your policy.

Who Can You Add Other Drivers to Your Car Insurance

When adding people to your car insurance policy, most insurers have strict rules and regulations around who can be included. It's important to check the specific requirements of your insurance provider before adding anyone to your policy. Some insurers allow you to include family members who don't live with you, like adult children, parents, or siblings if you provide a strong case for it.

Some insurers also allow domestic partners and significant others who don't live with you to be added to your policy if they meet specific criteria. Friends who don't live with you can be added sometimes, but it ultimately depends on the insurer's policy and their terms and conditions.. It's important to note that adding someone to your insurance policy may result in an additional premium cost, and not all insurance providers offer this option.

The fastest way to find out is to call your insurance provider and speak to a customer service representative.

Understanding Insurance Terms and Requirements

Understanding your insurance terms and requirements is important when selecting and managing an insurance policy. Here are some of the essential terms and requirements you need to know:

  • Policyholder: The person or entity that owns an insurance policy is referred to as the policyholder. The policyholder pays the premiums and is responsible for following the insurance policy's terms.
  • Named insured: A named insured is the individual or entity explicitly listed on the insurance policy as the primary policyholder. This person is entitled to receive coverage for any covered losses.
  • Secondary driver: A secondary driver is someone who has permission to drive the vehicle listed on an insurance policy, but isn't the primary driver or named insured.
  • Additional insured: An additional insured is listed on an insurance policy and entitled to coverage for any insured losses, typically due to a contractual agreement.
  • Policy exclusions: Policy exclusions are events or actions that an insurance policy doesn't cover. It's essential to carefully review the policy's exclusions to avoid disputes or unexpected expenses.

Requirements and restrictions for adding a non-resident to your car insurance

The specific requirements and restrictions for adding a non-resident to your car insurance vary between insurance companies. Usually, the non-resident must be legally allowed to drive in the country and have a valid driver's license.

As previously mentioned, there may be extra costs and restrictions for adding a non-resident to your policy. Always review the terms and conditions of your insurance policy when it comes to adding a non-resident to make sure you meet all requirements.

Benefits of Adding a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

Adding a non-resident to your car insurance policy can offer a variety of benefits, including shared coverage for occasional use and liability coverage for additional drivers. Not only does it provide the promise of protection against unexpected emergencies, but it's also an economical way to handle auto insurance. Also, with added protection comes the peace of mind that comes with knowing you're prepared for any potential liabilities that may happen in the event of an accident when you’re not behind the driver’s seat.

Risks of Adding a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

While having a non-resident on your car insurance policy may seem like an ideal solution for both protection and cost, doing so can put you at risk of financial liability in case of accidents caused by them. In addition to potentially higher premiums or cancellation of coverage due to the extra driver, adding someone else's name could damage relationships if they don't meet all necessary requirements when it comes time to renew the policy. So be sure that before making this decision, you assess whether any potential benefits are worth considering such risks.

Steps to Take Before Adding a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

Before extending car insurance coverage to a non-resident, make sure you follow these critical steps below. Knowing them ahead of time will make sure that the process goes smoothly so every one involved can get the right coverage:

  1. Review your policy and contact your insurance company: Before considering adding a non-resident to your car insurance, review your policy and contact your insurance company to understand what would be required for it to happen. You may need to modify your policy, obtain additional coverage, or pay a higher premium.
  2. Determine the non-resident's driving record and history: Understanding the non-resident's driving record and history is crucial to ensure they're a safe driver. You can request this information from the non-resident's previous insurance company, state DMV, or consumer reporting agency.
  3. Understand how the non-resident's driving record affects your insurance premiums: Adding a non-resident driver to your policy can increase your insurance rates. Therefore, it's important to understand how much it'll affect your premiums before deciding.
  4. Obtain written permission from the non-resident: Before adding a non-resident to your car insurance, you need to have written permission from the non-resident. This permission should include the non-resident's acknowledgment of the fact that your policy will cover them and that they'll follow your insurance company's policies and requirements.

Additional Considerations for Adding a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

One of the most important things to remember is that different insurance policies may have different requirements for adding non-residents. Additionally, it's important to know any state-specific requirements for adding non-residents to your policy. For example, in some cases, there may be restrictions on how long a non-resident can be added to your policy. Finally, it's important to understand your state's laws regarding primary and secondary drivers, as these could impact your ability to add a non-resident to your policy.

Alternatives to Adding a Non-Resident to Your Car Insurance

If you're a car owner and have a non-resident friend or family member visiting, there may be more practical or affordable options than adding them to your car insurance. Fortunately, there are alternatives available to ensure they have adequate coverage while driving your car. One option is to get a separate insurance policy for the non-resident individual.

It may entail additional costs, but it provides them with the coverage they need. You won't have to worry about the potential increase in your insurance premiums if they get into an accident. Another option is to rent a car for the non-resident. It provides them with insurance coverage and ensures that they can keep their vehicle and insurance policy separate.

About the Author: This article was crafted by the LOOP Marketing Team. Comprising of seasoned professionals with expertise in the insurance industry, our team is dedicated to providing readers with accurate, up-to-date, and valuable information. At LOOP, we're passionate about helping families navigate the world of car insurance, ensuring they get the best coverage at the most affordable rates. Learn more about our mission and values here.

For more insights on auto insurance and other related topics, visit our blog.

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