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It is common for the young drivers in the family to want to drive their parent’s vehicles. The first question that often comes up is whether they can do this without insurance. To recognize the proper answer to this question one has to understand the basics of car insurance.

Is the Driver Insured or Does the Insurance Apply to the Vehicle?


The answer to this is that it is the primary vehicle insurance that covers the vehicle. It is not the driver, but there are variables that come with this. It can depend on the type of vehicle insurance and if there have been any add-ons to the policy. In general, though, the basic insurance that the law requires for vehicle insurance covers the vehicle.

When an individual looks at their insurance car, they will note that there is specific information on this that pertains to the vehicle. It includes the make, model, and year of the vehicle as well as the VIN. If it were just the driver that the insurance was covering, this information would not be necessary.

Insurance Has to Be Active

The basic answer to can you drive your parent’s car without insurance is yes. However, the question really should be, do I need vehicle insurance to drive my parent’s car. Just because if the vehicle is not insured then the answer is no, you cannot drive your parent’s car. In fact, it is mandatory to have car insurance in Canada. The insurance pertains to driving cars on public roads.

Permission by Law


In respect to the law if the car has insurance the answer is yes.

Permission by Insurance Companies

The answer yes may vary because every insurance company is different. Some insurance companies will be more demanding on listing drivers on the policy.

It is essential to understand how insurance companies determine what the premiums are going to be on a policy. They rely on different types of information to decide what the premium will be. One area of focus will be on the drivers of the insured car. Even though technically the car insurance applies to the vehicle.

Based on this the Insurance Companies want to know who will be driving the vehicle.

Listing Secondary Drivers

It is most likely that the young drivers in the family will be using the family vehicle on a regular basis. If so, then listing them as a second driver may be wise. This way there will not be any worries should there be an incident. Referring to when the young driver will be driving the family vehicle. The premiums will be higher. This, however, will probably be well worth it should there be an accident.

Occasional Drivers

Most insurance companies will make allowances for occasional drivers. Should an accident occur then, there should be coverage for the driver under the insurance policy. No doubt though the insurance company will carefully scrutinize the circumstances. They could ask for proof the driver was an occasional driver.

The Importance of Your Driving Record as a Young Driver

After deciding to list the child of the vehicle insurance policyholder, it is essential to be upfront with the insurance company. The insurance company will ask several questions. These will pertain to the young driver.

They will probably want to know how frequently the child will be driving the vehicle. Plus, they will want information that pertains to their driving record. All of this will help to determine what the increase in the premiums will be. Also, what will be considered is the age of the driver. There are many parents that allow their adult children to drive their cars. The same question as to whether they can drive the vehicle without insurance still applies.

Is It Worth Taking A Chance?

Parents really get concerned about listing their children as drivers on their vehicles. This is especially true if they are new drivers. One of the concerns is that if an accident does occur then the rates pertaining to the policy will go way up. This can vary depending on the circumstances. Also, there are criteria that are set by the insurance company. In most cases, the insurance premiums will go up. However, the history of the policyholder is probably going to count for something. Having no previous claims is a good thing. With no claims filed, the Insurance company may recognize this.

Also, what is going to happen in the future may also determine if the premiums will increase. For example, is the same driver going to need coverage on the insurance again.

With insurance, there is a lot to think about. It is important to think about what could occur if the parents don’t list the child as a driver. Also, this is especially true if an accident occurs. It could mean that the claim is denied. If so, the financial consequences could be devastating.

The Young Person’s Responsibility

If any child is old enough to drive, then they are old enough to take on the responsibility of understanding car insurance. For their protection, they should determine what risk they are at. Specifically, if they are driving their parent’s car. If they are not properly insured and an accident occurs, they are the ones who face consequences.

The Parents’ Responsibility


It is up to the parents as the owner of the vehicle and the insured individual to understand their coverage. Parents should talk with their Insurance agency. It is a measure to determine what are the best steps to take to protect the driver. Plus, it is the responsible approach to obtaining insurance.

There is also nothing wrong with doing some additional research. It would be to see what different Insurance companies have to offer. Also, to see what their mandates are when it comes to the young driver. To determine if they need coverage for operating their parent’s vehicle.

Careful research into this matter of children and insurance for driving the parent’s car is important. It can help parents get the best deals with the best coverage.

About the Author: Ashley Miller

Ashley is an insurance content professional and very knowledgeable on all related subjects. Ashley has over 12 years of insurance content writing experience working with various insurance companies throughout her career.