The law does not require you to possess a driver’s license to legally become a car owner, whether you are buying a new or used car. A driving license is required if you need to drive your car or any other car on public roads.
If you are caught driving a vehicle on a public road without a driving license, you will automatically get a ticket.
However, it is important to understand the implications of owning a car without having a valid driving license. A driving license also acts as an identification document. Therefore if you don’t have one, then you need other government identification documents.
Reasons Why You Can Choose to Own a Vehicle without a Driver’s License
You could be purchasing the car to be driven by someone else.
One could be unable to renew their driving license due to a visual disability or other disabilities that may occur in the cause of their life. If you are disabled or over time you have developed visibility disability, in this case, you may own a car yet give a caregiver to drive you around.
If you are purchasing your car for business purposes, then various licensed drivers may operate the vehicle. Check your state laws on how to register a commercial vehicle.
On the other hand, if the car is a personal vehicle, then you have to provide details of who will be driving the car.
You May Also Be Buying a Car to Give a Family Member or a Friend as a Gift
You may also wish to employ a chauffeur to operate the car on your behalf for your own business or personal reasons.
If you intend to own a car without a driver’s license, it is important to check your state laws on car registration and insurance policies.
Motor Vehicle Registration
Do you need a license to register your vehicle?
Registration of vehicles has a specific procedure and vary from state to state. Most states have a specific government department assigned with the mandate of registering vehicles. Registration of vehicles in most states is done by the state’s department of motor vehicles.
Motor vehicle registration is compulsory for all category of vehicles that will be used on public roads.
The essence of motor vehicle registration is linking every vehicle with its owner for purposes of taxation and crime detection.
Most states will need you to have a valid driver’s license during registration of your vehicle. Once the car is registered, then it is usually issued with a registration certificate and a vehicle registration plate for display on the vehicle.
However, there are exceptions to this rule. You will be required to use your other government identification documents to register your vehicle.
It also depends on the type of car. Is the car a commercial vehicle, a private car or a vehicle that will not be used on public roads? Tractors or other vehicles that are limited for use on private property often require no registration in most states.
Must you have a driver’s license to obtain insurance for your vehicle?
Different states have different requirements for obtaining insurance for vehicles.
When it comes to an insurance policy, contact an insurance agent with your requirements so that you can get a special policy for an owner who is a non-operator. You will be required to list the primary driver of the vehicle with the details of their driving license on the policy. The policy will list you as an insured but a non-operator.
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What about car financing?
It is legal to get car financing from a bank, auto finance company or other credit organizations without owning a driver’s license for a vehicle.
However, be aware that it is quite rare to find motor vehicle owners who don’t have driver’s licenses. Therefore, you may experience some difficulty trying to convince an automobile salesperson to sell you a vehicle without being in possession of a driver’s license. In case you experience some difficulty, ask them to check with their main office.
Who should drive your car if you are not licensed to drive?
Remember that you won’t even be able to test drive your car without a valid driver’s license.
If you are not licensed to drive vehicles, is it possible to let your family, friends, relatives, work colleagues or neighbors drive your car? Is there any risk to their lives?
It is important to note that there are risks with letting others drive your vehicle.
While you may wish to be careful on the road and avoid accidents and violations, other drivers may get ticketed with a violation. The violation will be reflected on your policy. Also if the car is involved in an accident and the damages exceed the auto insurance policy limit, you may be held liable.
In case you are not licensed to drive vehicles, you should be careful about who drives your car.
If you must let other drivers use your vehicle, then use the same drivers and don’t keep changing drivers.
As you know, every car is unique and every driver is different. It also takes a while to get used to a new car. It is, therefore, a great risk to keep letting someone who has never used your vehicle before to sit behind the wheel. It will take them a while to get used to your car.
But as far as insurance is concerned, be sure that your car has a non-owner insurance policy. Therefore anyone who drives your car will be covered by this policy.
Challenges of managing a vehicle that you are not driving
A vehicle needs regular maintenance to stay roadworthy. It, therefore, requires one person to be responsible for it. As you know, the insurance policy and car registration have to be renewed annually. The car also needs regular servicing and fuelling. It is a great risk to have too many drivers operating a vehicle because the car may get neglected.
If you own a vehicle that you do not drive, ensure that you have a system of managing the vehicle all year round. Ensure that you have a budget for fueling the car, or a system where whoever drives the car is liable to fuel the car and maintain it.
Also when your car is on the road without you, expect to be answerable to any offenses that may be committed by whoever is driving it.
It is much easier to manage your personal vehicle if you are the primary driver. However, if you are not in a position to get a driver’s license, it is still possible to be a proud car owner. Because the car belongs to you, stay in charge of maintaining the vehicle.