Usually, if you finance a car or lease a car your lender or lease contract will require you to have car insurance. However, if you are buying the car without a loan you can typically purchase a car without having auto insurance. The real question is- do you want to? In most states, you can legally operate a car without car insurance. So, if you plan to purchase the car and never drive it you might be ok. However, if you need to operate the vehicle (even if it’s just on the way home from the car lot) you will need car insurance.
In most states, proof of insurance is also required in order to register a car for the first time. So, in theory, you could purchase a car and keep it parked in your driveway without registering or insuring it. However, the car would not be legal to operate on public roadways. (It would also not be insured against theft or loss.)
In the event that you transported the vehicle without insurance, you would be in violation of most state traffic laws and would become a prime candidate for an expensive traffic ticket. Traffic fines for drivers who cannot produce proof of insurance vary from one state to the next. However, fines typically range from $100-$800.
New Car Insurance Checklist
[ ] Determine what type of coverage you want on this vehicle. (Read our Coverages page for more details on coverage options)
[ ] Before speaking with a licensed auto insurance consultant, gather the following documentation to help streamline the quote process:
Your driver’s license number
The car’s VIN number
The make, model and year of the vehicle
[ ] Get Quotes and Purchase a Policy
[ ] Obtain proof of insurance and put it in your glove compartment, center console or wallet where you will be able to find it in an emergency or if you get pulled over
[ ] Pay your premiums on time and avoid accidents and tickets. This will keep your insurance score low and reduce the chances of your rates increasing.