Can you get auto insurance with just a learner's permit?

Answer from a General Insurance Agent
Yes, though there seems to be many opinions here. The "Correct" answer is "Yes". You can buy Auto Insurance with just a permit. In fact, all drivers are required to carry proof of Financial Responsibility Regardless of the status of your license. You "can" purchase Auto Insurance with a permit, with a temporary license, a foreign license, a conditional license or any other type of license.

A "Permit" is permission to drive and therefore a temporary license with certain restrictions. A Drivers Permit comes with all the responsibilities of anyone who operates a motor vehicle on public roads, including your financial responsibility.

There is No law that prohibits a driver from purchasing insurance. The law does not require you to be licensed at all in order to purchase Insurance. The Law requires you to have some type of license or permit to operate a motor vehicle on "Public Roads". You are "Not" required to be licensed nor insured to operate a vehicle on "Private Roads".

Although most insurance companies will require you to have a license of some type before they will offer you coverage, this is a matter of the company's underwriting guidelines, not a matter of law.

When you deal with what we in the Business refer to as a "Captured Agent" and "Standard Lines Agent" Representing a single Insurance Brand, They are known by slogans like Good Hands people in All States, "Farm" Insurers of the State variety "is there", and some others. You have to understand that these Captured Agents are not required to pass independently administered State Licensing Exams. They only take an internally adminstered company exam on company property overseen by company employees where cookies and tea are served and with no impartial third party supervision. As you might have guessed "Everybody Passes". The result is that they tend to have very little knowledge about insurance laws and regulations, but they know an awfull lot about company slogans and predefined package policy guidelines. They quite often and quite erroneously quote those company guidelines as "Law", when in truth they never even had to learn the law. They offer cookie cutter package policies which require the agent to have little knowledge or experience of anything that does not fit the pattern. A captured Agent is prohibited from offering any other company's product line and are basically owned by indentured servitude to the domestic insurance company they represent.

In Contrast, An Independent Insurance agent has to take an exam on non company property administered and strictly supervised by a paid disinterested third party, usually at a licensed independent testing facility or an institution of higher education. Typically, about half the class will pass the exam on a given day. A separate exam is required for each class or line of insurance for which the agent wishes to be licensed. An Independent Agent will generally have a vastly superior understanding of insurance regulations because they actually had to study and pass a real exam.

An Independent Agent typically will represent dozens of different domestic, foreign and international Insurance Companies. The result is an expansive knowledge and experience with a wide variety of standard, nonstandard and customized coverage forms at a much lower rate than the good hands people could never come close too.

Internationally known insurers almost never bicker about claims nor do they get bogged down in trivia. Even NASA obtains it's insurance from an International Carrier. Just take a look at what happened after Katrina. Most people found that they were "not in good hands" at all and that the farm people "were not there" nor even anywhere in sight. No complaints have been registered by those who obtained their insurance through independent agencies.

Insurance for a New Driver
You have to keep in mind that a "permit" holds more weight than maybe 20 or 30 years ago. In many states it really constitutes a RESTRICTED LICENSE meaning by legal definition insurance companies still can and to an extent are REQUIRED to insure you if you pay them and furnish the permit.

There are however many uppity high class insurance companies like State Farm or 21st century that won't insure someone learning who dosen't have a full unrestricted license, but they won't insure anyone for that matter who does not have 3 YEARS of VERIFIABLE, PERFECT (no points, accidents) of licensed driving experience. It is absolutely possible for you to get insurance. Check you phone book and try to find an agent. Depending on how old you are, the rates may be steep.. but yes not every company is going to deny you and WARNING: Your parent's insurance will not neccessarily cover you if you're not SPECIFICALLY LISTED.

In most cases, like what happened to me if there's a problem they aren't even going to ask to see your guardian's license. I know because I was in a major accident two weeks ago, and I have a learner permit and have for almost 20 years. They didn't even care to see my wife's lic. If you're driving, you're are still soley responsible no matter what restrictions are imposed.

More advice from other FAQ Farmers:
No. You cannot get insurance when you have just a learner's permit. You have to be a licensed driver. Until then, you should be covered by the insurance of the parent/guardian that you are required to drive with.

I have a Leaners Permit in the state of Virginia, I was able to purchase my own car, and start an insurance policy with progressive. With no one else on the policy but myself, So at least in the State of Virginia you can, the statement above is very true. It depends on state law, and the policy of the insurance company but yes i was able to do it.

Somewhere, somehow, there's insurance available to you, though as you've discovered, it gets pretty expensive (don't worry; that typically changes the longer you carry insurance and assuming you're accident-free).

Yes, insurance companies do insure people with just a learner's permit; however, these are typically teenagers who are under their parents' insurance policies. You'll find coverage.

Just today I tried getting auto insurnace with just a learners permit. I called 10 different places and noone could help me. I finally called Gindin Insurance Agency. They gave me a quote, it was expensive but at least they can give me insurance! So there are companies out there that will give insurance with just a learners permit.

Yes you can! I had my learner's permit and got auto insurance. Basically, my husband had car insurance already with progressive (he has his license). They just added me to his plan as an "unrated driver". It added $8 to our plan. Call them and ask about it.

Most of the time you need someone with a drivers license on the insurance policy. After that you can either be added as an unrated driver, or not added at all. I don't know about other states but in Illinois you are not allowed to drive with just a learner's permit, you need someone with a valid license in the car at all times while driving. Most of the time that's a parent, in which case their insurance covers anything that you do while driving with them.

For basic insurance for washington state its about 120.37 (for me) a month.

I just made twenty calls today and was told that in MA it is illegal for them to sell me insurance if I only have a learner's permit.

You should as long as you aren't trying to use one of those super upscale companies like 21st century or State Farm - that require more than 3 yrs LICENSED experience and a SPOTLESS driving record. Look in your telephone book for smaller more domestic insurance AGENTS and what they will do is take your imformation and put it in a computer search engine to return you the most reasonable rate possible. 98.9% of these agents will tell you that it makes no difference if it's a permit because a license is a license, bottom line. The condition you must be with another licensed driver is a restriction imposed, just like if you have an A restriction for corrective lenses or D for daylight driving only. It holds essentially the same weight and when you pass the road test your LIC# does not change either. I was involved in a MAJOR accident with a permit last week, (no I've never had a full license in the 20 years since I was 16) and I tried to show the officers my wife's license along with mine, and he didn't even care to see it!! I was cited, she was not and AIG, my insurance provider had mercy and didn't raise my rates. Like I said having a learner's license has little or no affect over everything per se. Whatever you do, just don't get caught driving with no insurance! :)

Answer for antoher expert:
Hi, I'm a P&C Underwriter for a national direct insurance company. Some of the answers here are incorrect or unintentionally misleading. Keeping in mind that my observations will be limited to the auto contract that my company uses and there may be some discrepancies (but most contracts are very similar) here are my answers: No insurance company is required to issue you a policy. However, if they do they are required to pay out on any claims unless you the policy holder made a material misrepresentation when the policy was quoted to you. I do not think that neglecting to inform the company that you only have say 30 days experience driving motor vehicles is a problem, but if they ask you 'So you have a regular Virginia drivers license?' and you reply 'Yes.' it could be construed as you misrepresentating yourself, since a graduated/permit license is not nominally considered a 'regular' license. Most companies will order a MVR and a CLUE (comphrensive loss underwriting exchange) report on the spot on you so they'll know exactly what kind of license you have anyway.

To shortern that previous paragraph up: Yes, you probably can get a insurance policy with a learners permit so long as you tell the insurance company all you have is a permit.

Next Answer:
i just called esurance, if you have a parent/guardian with them you can get insurance.just my 2 cents!!

Next Answer:
Yes you can, but typically only under your parent or guardian's policy, according to CarInsurance.com. Reference: http://www.carinsurance.com/Search.aspx?q=learner\'s%20permit

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