Can I insure a car that’s not in my name?

Can you insure a car you don’t own? And if so, how? If you’re looking to insure a car that isn’t yours, read our guide and find out how to go about insuring a borrowed car.

Can you insure a car you don’t own? And if so, how? If you’re looking to insure a car that isn’t yours, read our guide and find out how to go about insuring a borrowed car.

Alex Hasty
Insurance and finance expert
4
minute read
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Last Updated 16 NOVEMBER 2022

Can I insure a car that’s not in my name?

There are all sorts of reasons you might want to get insured on someone else’s car. Let’s say you’re house-sitting for friends and plan on using their car while they’re away. Or you have a job that requires you to pick up your manager’s kids or run errands. It may just be that the owner of the car doesn’t use it much and is happy for you to borrow it.

Whatever the reason, if you don’t own the car, you’ll need the right insurance in place to drive it. Here’s how to make sure you're insuring a borrowed car correctly.

How does car insurance work if I don’t own the car?

Insuring a car you don’t own works in the same way as insurance for your own car. The level of cover you’ll have will depend on the policy.

A word of warning though: be careful to avoid fronting. This is when the person listed as the car’s main driver isn’t actually the person doing most of the driving. It tends to happen when inexperienced drivers use a friend or family member to get cheaper car insurance. But it’s a type of insurance fraud and illegal.

How to get insured on someone else’s car

Want to get insured on someone else’s car? You have a few options:

  • Buy your own insurance policy
    Be sure to tell insurance providers that you’re not the car’s owner or registered keeper when you apply. Not all insurance providers will offer this type of policy, and it may not be the cheapest way of getting insurance for a car you don’t own.
  • Have yourself added to the owner’s policy as a named driver
    Named driver insurance lets the policyholder add an additional driver – in this case, you – to their insurance. People often do this when their child, partner or friend wants to use their car.
  • Buy a temporary car insurance policy 
    This is ideal if, for example, you’re house-sitting for the car’s owners. Cover usually lasts between one and 28 days, but some insurance providers will cover you for up to three months.
  • Check you’re not already insured
    It’s unusual nowadays, but there are still some fully comprehensive policies that include third-party cover for driving other cars. This’ll probably only offer third-party cover, and you might only be covered for driving another car in an emergency.

Who is the registered keeper of a car?

A car’s registered keeper isn’t always its owner. It’s whoever is named on the DVLA registration certificate. You may be the registered keeper of your company car, for example.

If you’re not the car’s main driver or registered keeper, you’ll need to make sure you’re covered to drive it.

If I’m not a car’s registered keeper, can I be insured as the main driver?

It depends. Some insurance providers will only insure you as the main driver if you’re the car’s owner or registered keeper. If you’re having trouble getting cover from one insurance provider, it’s worth contacting others for a quote. That’s where we can help.

Will all insurance providers cover me to drive someone else’s car?

Not necessarily. Some insurance providers will only cover you to drive a car you don’t own if it belongs to your spouse or partner, a parent, your employer or a leasing company.

How much does it cost to insure a car that’s not in my name?

You could find that it’s more expensive to insure a car you don’t own as insurance providers may consider you a higher risk. They may assume that you’re less likely to care about the car and might drive carelessly or damage it.

How can I find insurance to drive someone else’s car?

Start a quote with us and we’ll search a wide range of trusted UK providers to help you find suitable cover.

Frequently asked questions

Can I insure a car that’s already insured by someone else?

Yes, you can take out a separate insurance policy on a car already insured by someone else – but you may not want to. If two of you insure a car on two different policies, you might end up paying more than necessary. And remember you can only make one claim – double insurance doesn’t mean double the payout.Claiming for the same thing on two policies would be fraudulent. Instead, look into adding yourself to the other person’s policy as a named driver. That way you could both drive the car on one policy, potentially saving money.

How can someone else get insured on my car?

Just as you can be insured on someone else’s car, someone can be insured on yours. If you trust the person, you could add them to your policy as a named driver. But remember, if they’re involved in an accident while driving your car, any claim will be on your policy. This could wipe out any no-claims discount you’ve built up.

If you’d rather keep it separate, the person could take out their own policy on your car. But to do this, some insurance providers will require them to be a spouse, partner or parent. They could also be your employer, if it’s a company car.

Do I always need to take out insurance to drive a car I don’t own?

Probably. Some fully comprehensive policies may offer cover for driving other cars in emergencies, but this is unusual. Even if it is the case, you won’t have the same level of cover you do when driving your own car. You’ll usually only have basic third-party cover, meaning you’re only protected against damage to other cars and property or injury to other people. Any damage to you or the car you’re driving, won’t be covered.

Can I get temporary car insurance for a car I don’t own?

Yes, you can get temporary car insurance for someone else's car. You might need this if you’re taking your car on holiday and want to share the driving with someone else. We’ll help you compare cover for anything from an hour to 84 days.

Is it more expensive to insure a car I don’t own?

You’ll probably have to pay more to insure a car that doesn’t belong to you. This is partly because temporary insurance policies tend to be more expensive than standard ones, and also because insurance providers may consider you a higher risk.

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