What is non-owner auto insurance and when do you need it?

Non-owner automobile insurance might save you money if you don’t own a car but often borrow or rent one. A non-owner automobile insurance coverage may be less expensive than paying for liability insurance via a car rental business. When you’re ready to buy a car, this form of coverage may qualify you for a continuous coverage discount on a conventional auto insurance policy. If you’re thinking about getting non-owner auto insurance, explain how it works and why it’s a good idea.

What exactly is non-owner car insurance, and how does it work?


Non-owner automobile insurance is insurance for licensed drivers who do not own a car. It usually just covers the policyholder’s obligation. So, while a non-owners insurance will not protect the car you’re driving, it will compensate you for any damages or injuries you cause to others.

This sort of insurance may only provide coverage to the policyholder. If this is the case, your spouse or partner will require their own insurance coverage. This coverage is also commonly categorised as supplementary, which implies it covers expenditures that are not covered by the vehicle owner’s primary auto insurance. Furthermore, there is no deductible to fulfill before the coverage kicks in with non-owner auto insurance.


You should search around for the greatest rate, just like you would for any other type of insurance. Non-owner insurance isn’t available in every state where a carrier operates, but many of the big names do, including Geico, Nationwide, and The General. Nationwide is accessible in 46 states plus Washington, D.C., making it an excellent starting point for policy comparisons.


Geico provides non-owner motor insurance and is CNBC Select’s top overall automobile insurance provider, with consistently excellent J.D. Power and Better Business Bureau (BBB) customer satisfaction ratings.

What does non-owner automobile insurance cover?


Non-owner auto insurance covers you if you cause injuries or damage while driving a borrowed or rented vehicle. It pays for the following expenses:

  • Property restoration or replacement
  • Medical costs for injuries caused by you Legal fees if you are sued as a result of a covered accident

A non-owners vehicle policy may provide additional coverage depending on your current coverage and where you reside. Some plans cover your medical fees and may also include underinsured motorist coverage (which pays for when another driver is at fault but lacks sufficient liability coverage to cover all of the costs).

What does non-owner automobile insurance not cover?

  • Non-owner vehicle insurance often offers only liability coverage, which means it does not include:
  • Damage to your car: This may be covered by the vehicle owner’s insurance or the insurance of another motorist if they are at fault.
  • Personal property: Any damage or theft to your items in a car you’re driving is not covered, but if you have renters or homeowners insurance, that coverage may apply.
  • Business activity: A personal non-owners vehicle insurance policy does not cover business-related driving, but non-owners automobile insurance is available for companies.
  • When is non-owner vehicle insurance appropriate?

If you do not own a car, you do not automatically require non-owner automobile insurance. However, there are times when it can save you money.

If you intend to buy a car soon or are in the market for a new vehicle, a non-owners auto policy may help you qualify for a continuous coverage discount. Many vehicle insurance companies provide discounts if you have had coverage for a specific period of time, usually six months or more. However, you should do the math to determine if the reduction is significant enough to warrant paying for non-owners auto insurance.

This sort of coverage may be beneficial to someone who often hires cars or utilizes car-sharing services such as Zipcar or Turo. Having a non-owners automobile insurance policy helps you to avoid paying for the liability coverage provided by the rental business, which may easily cost $10-$15 per day on top of all other rental expenses. But, once again, do the arithmetic to ensure that the savings outweigh the costs.