Buying a new or used car, whether it's your first car or you're replacing your old one, can be an exciting time. But one thing you can't forget in the process is figuring out your car insurance for your new ride.
So how long do you have to get insurance after buying a used car?
If you're buying your used car from a dealer, most of the time, they will require you to have insurance before you drive off the lot.
But if you're buying a car from another person, or replacing your car with a different one, there are various regulations on how long you have to get your car insured.
In the article below, we will take a look at how long you have to get insurance for your new car.
Table of Contents
- Insurance Is Mandatory
- Comparison Shopping Takes Time
- How long do you have to get insurance after buying a used car if you already have car insurance?
- How long do you have to get insurance after buying a used car if you don't have car insurance?
- Were You In An Accident Without Insurance?
Insurance is Mandatory
In almost every state, there are minimum insurance requirements for automobiles that are being driven.
So, unless you happen to live in one of the states that don't require insurance, you're not going to be able to drive off the lot without a policy in place.
Many dealerships provide some assistance in finding insurance for your new vehicle. Still, they typically just set you up with a computer, maybe make a few suggestions on carriers, and you take care of the rest yourself.
That's not exactly the optimal setting for getting the best price on the best policy.
Comparison Shopping Takes Time
You probably wouldn't buy a car just by looking at it online and not driving it.
You want to look at a few different makes and models, colors, and even trim options and drive a few of them before you finally decide what car is right for you.
Just as you comparison shop for a new car, it's also wise to take a look at several different insurance options to make sure you're getting the best deal on the right coverage for you.
To get the best price, it can help to bundle your auto insurance with other policies, like your homeowner's or renter's insurance.
By placing your coverages with the same company, you can get a discount on all of your policies, but you'll need to answer quite a few questions about your needs.
I don't know about you, but that's something I'd rather do at home and not at a dealership. That's why it is good to be prepared before you go in to buy your car.
How long do you have to get insurance after buying a used car if you already have car insurance?
Every state has different regulations, but in general, if you already have a car insurance policy in place for the vehicle you're trading in, it will apply to your new car for a certain number of days.
This grace period typically lasts anywhere from seven to 30 days. If possible, it's best to let your insurance company know that day, so they can add your newly purchased used car, and remove your old vehicle if needed.
It's possible to add your used car before you make your purchase if you're sure about which one you'll be buying.
Your insurance company will need to know the vehicle information number, purchase price, and other information, but you would have to be absolutely certain of the car before you do this.
Most insurance companies will also have a hotline for adding insurance over the weekend. And then, if necessary, you can talk to your agent the following weekday.
How long do you have to get insurance after buying a used car if you don't have car insurance?
If you don't currently have car insurance at the time of purchase, you'll need it before you're legally able to drive the car once you're the legal owner.
It's illegal to drive a car without insurance in most states, so even if you're purchasing from a private person, you risk being pulled over and fined if you're caught without insurance.
If you buy from a dealership, you won't be able to drive off the lot without insurance, especially if you're financing your car.
The best bet would be to talk to an insurance company or agent before going to purchase your car to get quotes for insuring the different vehicles you're interested in.
That will allow the dealer to fax them your newly purchased car information to get you coverage.
Whenever you buy a car, whether it is new or used, you won't be able to register it without insurance, and you only have a grace period of around 20 days, depending on the state, to register your car.
Were You in an Accident Without Insurance?
If you were recently involved in a car accident and you didn't have car insurance, you might be panicking wondering how you're going to take care of everything.
The best thing you can do for yourself now is to hire a car accident attorney.
Car accident attorneys have handled plenty of cases where an involved party didn't have car insurance, so they will know how to help you.
The team at Helping The Hurt knows the struggle that every personal injury client faces and the financial impact of an accident injury, especially if you are uninsured.
Helping The Hurt dedicates their attorney's time and energy to making each client feel appreciated and make sure their personal questions and needs are met.
To speak with the team at Helping The Hurt today, click the button below.