Car Insurance on a Car If You Don’t Drive It

You need car insurance on a car if you don’t drive it if that car is registered with the state. State insurance laws require insurance coverage for all registered vehicles. Auto insurance on a car you don’t drive can qualify for lower rates, low-mileage discounts, or classic car coverage depending on the age of the vehicle. Find the cheapest insurance rates for a car you don’t drive with our free comparison tool below.

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Tonya Sisler has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina in Journalism and has worked for 15+ years in management. She has also completed a proofreading certification and is currently a professional writer.

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Brad Larson has been in the insurance industry for more than a dozen years. He started out as a claims adjuster for a national carrier. He has since switched to the agency side of the business. Brad is licensed in all P&C lines.

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Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Oct 27, 2020

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Things to know...

  • Some cars that are not being driven regularly still need to be properly insured per state legal requirements
  • Even a stored vehicle can be severely damaged, and car insurance provides you with a way to pay for the repairs
  • Drivers can keep insurance costs affordable by purchasing a low mileage car insurance policy and taking advantage of discounts

You may have a vehicle that you drive around town on a regular basis to commute to work, to run errands, and to complete other tasks.

If you are like many people, you may also have at least one vehicle stored in your garage or in a similar safe environment that you never or rarely drive.

While you may be aware that you are legally responsible for maintaining auto coverage on your primary vehicle, it may seem like a waste of money to insure a vehicle that never or rarely leaves its secure location.

Before you cancel existing coverage on your stored or rarely used vehicle, keep in mind that auto insurance may be required on stored vehicles in some cases.

Even when it is not required by your state’s laws, auto coverage offers substantial benefits and may be more affordable than you might think.

Compare car insurance quotes right here by entering your zip code above.

Understand Your State’s Legal Requirements

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While most states require drivers to purchase a minimum amount of liability coverage on primary vehicles, coverage requirements vary substantially for stored or not driven vehicles.

Some states require all vehicles that are registered with the state to be legally insured at all times, and you may face substantial penalties if you fail to comply with these laws.

Other states are more lenient in this area, and they may only require auto insurance if you transport the car via towing or trailer on a public road or when at least two tires touch a public road.

You should be aware that all vehicles driven on public roads should be properly insured at all times, and this includes even if you are only driving the vehicle down the road a few times per year.

The insurance requirements that you may need to meet vary by state. However, you may face substantial penalties if you are caught driving an uninsured vehicle. In some states, you may even have your driver’s license suspended or revoked.

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Determine Your Risks

In some states, auto insurance on stored vehicles is still required. Regardless of whether insurance is required or not, it offers substantial benefits to vehicle owners.

You may think that you need to file a claim for vehicle damages on a stored vehicle is minimal or non-existent, but this may not be the case.

Some vehicles, such as classic cars that have the following characteristics:

  • they have been beautifully restored
  • they have substantial value
  • there is a risk that these fine cars could be stolen

Stored vehicles can also be damaged, and this can result in a financial loss if your vehicle is not properly insured.

For example, a severe storm or a fire could damage a vehicle that is secured inside a structure. Another risk relates to the potential theft of a stored vehicle.

Such events can result in substantial repair bills or even in the complete loss of the vehicle, and this can be financially devastating in some cases.

As you can see, there is a strong benefit associated with buying vehicle insurance for stored vehicles, and some drivers are even required by their state to buy coverage.

After you have determined how much coverage you need or want to buy for your stored vehicle, spend time requesting online quotes. This is a fast and easy way to comparison shop and to find the best deal possible on the coverage you need.

Purchase Low Mileage Insurance


Because car insurance is required for some stored vehicles and because it offers benefits to drivers even when it is not required, it makes sense to purchase low mileage insurance today.

Insurance providers determine their estimated risk associated with insuring vehicles when you request a quote, and the number of miles you drive regularly in the vehicle is one of the factors that is reviewed.

Drivers who rarely or never drive their vehicle may qualify for substantial rate savings on a low mileage policy through some providers, and this means that coverage may be more affordable than you initially thought.

Choose the Right Coverage Types and Limits

When you are revising your existing coverage for your rarely used vehicle or when you are shopping around for a new policy, it is important to carefully review the coverage options. Liability coverage is most often required by state law.

Therefore, if you are buying coverage only to comply with legal requirements, this may be the type of coverage you need.

If you are concerned about possible damage to your vehicle, such as through a severe storm, a fire, or a theft, comprehensive insurance is an option to consider.

For all types of car insurance coverage, you can set your coverage limits and deductible amount as desired to control the cost of your car insurance. Shopping around is also a great way to determine the most affordable rates available.

However, you should only buy coverage from a reputable and established provider who has great financial strength.

Take Advantage of Car Insurance Discounts

While shopping around is a great way to potentially save money on the car insurance you need, you can also save additional money through some auto discounts. Discounts vary by provider, but some may be well-suited to you or your vehicle. These include:

  • A low mileage discount
  • A senior citizen discount
  • A safe driver discount
  • A discount for parking the car in a garage or enclosed space

These are only a few of the more common discounts that most providers offer, but discounts and their qualifications vary. With this in mind, it is wise to shop around to find the best deal on car insurance that you can find.

Protect Your Vehicle With an Effective Car Insurance Policy


Even a stored a vehicle that is rarely or never driven has financial value, and you could lose this asset because of a wide range of damaging events.

While some states require all registered vehicles to be properly insured at all times, all assets that have value should be insured by a reputable provider. Review a provider’s financial strength and overall customer satisfaction rating before making a purchase.

Compare car insurance quotes right here to find a policy that’s right for you. Enter your zip code below to begin.



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