How to Get Car Insurance With a Suspended License
There are many reasons why someone would have a suspended or revoked license, including driving without insurance, receiving a drug or alcohol-related driving offense, incurring repeat traffic offenses or failing to pay child support.
Though you can’t drive legally without a valid driver’s license, you’ll still need car insurance in many cases, even if your license is suspended or revoked. However, finding insurance tends to be more difficult. Your options may be limited, and you may not get cheap car insurance rates with a suspended license.
Even if your license is suspended or revoked, you must carry state minimum liability coverage on a tagged car in your name or risk fines and a longer suspension period.
A lapse in car insurance can increase the amount you pay by $163 after a brief lapse and $282 after a lapse longer than 31 days.
Applying discounts, reducing coverages, insuring a driver with a clean driving record and shopping for insurance quotes could help you get cheaper car insurance rates with a suspended license.
Can You Get Car Insurance With a Suspended License?
Yes, you can get car insurance with a suspended license. If you own a car, most states require it to be tagged and insured, even if your license is suspended or revoked. Having a suspended license makes it challenging because you cannot be rated as a driver on your policy if you can’t legally drive. You may be excluded as a driver until your license is reinstated or a restriction is authorized. In this case, there are a few ways you can get car insurance with a suspended or revoked license:
- Rate a household member with a clean driving record as the driver on your policy, though this may not be an option with all insurance companies.
- Get approved for a hardship or restricted driver’s license, which allows you to drive for special circumstances, like to work or school.
- Purchase SR-22 insurance.
- If someone else is on the title of the car, insure it under their name.
Can Car Insurance Companies See If Your License Is Suspended?
Yes, car insurance companies can see if your license is suspended or revoked. The motor vehicles division in your state will notify your insurance company electronically, in the same way they would if you were convicted of a ticket or moving violation.
If your insurance company is notified of a suspended license, the company may issue a cancellation notice or nonrenewal of the insurance policy, even if you are not close to the renewal period. The insurance company may also provide an offer of exclusion, which will allow the insurance policy to stay active but require the policyholder to sign a form excluding you from coverage. In this case, you won’t be covered if you get into an accident, even if you own the vehicle.
Should I Carry Car Insurance If My License Is Suspended?
If the tags on your car aren’t expired, you’re legally required to insure it, even if your license is suspended or revoked. If you don’t maintain car insurance coverage on your tagged vehicle, you could face:
- Fines, including impound fees if the car is towed
- A longer suspension of your driver’s license
- A vehicle registration suspension
- No coverage if you get into a car accident
- Higher insurance rates when you get a new car insurance quote
For example, in Pennsylvania, the penalties for not having the minimum required coverages are a $300 fine and a three-month suspension of your driver’s license and car registration. If the car is involved in an accident or is damaged by weather, there is no coverage without an active car insurance policy.
If your coverage lapses, insurance companies may consider you high-risk when you shop for car insurance quotes, which can affect your rates. For instance, the cost for Travelers insurance without suspension and no lapse in coverage is $1,478, but to reinstate it with a lapse less than 30 days, the rate increases to $1,657. If the lapse is greater than 31 days, the insurance cost is even higher at $1,914.
The Average Cost of Insurance if You Have a Lapse in Coverage
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Can I Lower My Car Insurance Coverage if My License is Suspended?
If your car is financed or leased, you may have to carry full coverage insurance to meet lender requirements while your license is suspended. If you own your vehicle outright, you might be able to purchase less coverage to reduce your car insurance costs. Consider the risk if your car will be driven and whether removing comprehensive and collision is the right choice.
If you plan to store your car untagged, we recommend purchasing comprehensive-only coverage. However, if your vehicle is tagged, you’re required to meet your state’s minimum liability insurance requirements to avoid fines and penalties, regardless of your driver’s license status.
Can You Get Car Insurance With a Revoked License?
Yes, though you’ll need to list a rated driver with a valid license on your policy, with an exclusion for the revoked licensed driver. Depending on your state, you may only have the option to purchase high-risk insurance or SR-22 insurance, which is more expensive.
Even if your license is revoked, you have to meet your state’s minimum insurance requirements if your car is tagged. If you don’t, you could face fines, penalties, jail time and higher costs for car insurance in the future.
What Car Insurance Companies Serve Drivers With a Suspended License?
Not all standard car insurance companies offer coverage to drivers with a suspended or revoked license. Some of the companies that do are:
There are also nonstandard car insurance companies that provide high-risk insurance at lower rates than standard companies. Nonstandard car insurance companies include:
If both standard and nonstandard insurance companies deny you coverage, you can also get a car insurance quote through state insurance groups. These state-funded plans are for high-risk drivers who can’t secure coverage through other means.
The lists provided may not be the only insurance companies offering coverage with a suspended license. If you aren’t sure if a company provides insurance for a driver with a suspended license, contact them directly.
How to Get Cheap Car Insurance Quotes With a Suspended License
There are a few ways to get cheap car insurance after an accident and for drivers with a suspended or revoked license.
List a driver with a clean driving record as the rated driver on the policy.
Change your level of coverage to save on monthly costs.
Take advantage of discounts.
Switch to a cheaper carrier.
Don’t lapse insurance coverage if your car is tagged.
About the Author
- AIPSO. "Plan Sites." Accessed June 20, 2021.
- Insurance Information Institute. "Automobile Financial Responsibility Laws by State." Accessed June 20, 2021.
- Insurance Information Institute. "Is it legal to drive without insurance?." Accessed June 20, 2021.
- Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. "Fact Sheet - Insurance Law." Accessed June 20, 2021.