If you’re in Virginia or New Hampshire, you may get away without car insurance. For the rest, you cannot. It is a legal requirement almost anywhere in the world for a new car to come with insurance. You are legally not allowed to take home your brand-new car from the dealership if it is not insured. This legal requirement ensures that you, the car, and the people and properties you will encounter on the road will be financially compensated if an accident happens.
Driving a car without insurance can land you in hot water with the state and the lender. Except for Virginia and New Hampshire, most states do not allow car buyers to drive a new car off the dealership without coverage. While some dealerships will let you take the car home even without insurance, this does not usually happen. Also, you need to show financial capability before the dealership will allow this.
Where Can You Get Car Insurance?
Most dealerships can offer car insurance with different levels of coverage. You can get the same day insurance to take the new car home legally and still have enough time to update your existing insurance or purchase a new one from a different provider. You can also call your agent before going to the showroom to have an idea of what type of insurance you need.
Lenders, such as banks and other financial institutions, typically partner with insurance companies. This way, they can offer a policy when they approve the car loan. Many car buyers prefer to get insurance from the lender because it saves the hassle of dealing with two separate agencies.
You can also choose to use an existing policy on your new car. However, there’s a catch. While you can trade in an old car and use its policy on the new car, the insurance company will only cover the value of your original automobile. For example, you traded in a $10,000 worth sedan for a brand-new SUV worth $35,000. If your new SUV gets into an accident and is totaled, your coverage will only be $10,000.
If you want to use the existing policy, you can do so, but upgrading it will make more sense. Ask your agent about increasing the coverage limits before taking the new car home. It’s a simple process that doesn’t take much of your time, but it saves you from the hassle and financial disruption.
What Does Insurance Do for You?
Car insurance is no different from life insurance. It insures the policyholder in case something happens on the road. Depending on your coverage, you might only need to shell out a small amount of money when your car gets totaled because of an accident. The insurance provider will also shoulder the cost of accommodation and car rental while your vehicle is in the shop. It will also be financially liable for third-party injuries and damages.
Comprehensive car insurance will even cover the so-called Acts of God. Essentially, these are non-human and non-mechanical damage risks caused by natural phenomena. If the damage to your car was because of natural disasters, you could rest assured that your comprehensive insurance policy can cover it.
Most car insurance companies will consider floods, earthquakes, storms, or typhoons as an Act of God. Fires are usually kept out of this list because it takes time to confirm if the fire was man-made or natural.
Even if the car dealership says you can take the car home without insurance, it is still better to err on the side of caution. Sure, how unlucky are you to get into an accident driving a new car from the dealership, right? But do you really want to take that chance? Make sure all your documents are in order before bringing home your new car.