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Learners Permit And Your Young Driver
Yes. You do need auto insurance when driving with a learner’s permit. This insurance must adhere tot eh laws of the state in which you are driving. In general, however, a person with a learner’s permit will be automatically covered by the insurance of their parents, as long as the parents are in the car and the person is obeying the laws of driving under a learner’s permit.

This statement is a large generality. You should check with your individual agent as car insurance laws and insurance varies by state.

But do you have to add your teen to your policy when he gets a driver's permit or a driver's license? The answer could increase your car insurance rate of hundreds of dollars. Give me a call or e-mail and we can talk about your options.


Permit vs. license

Driving permits allow teens to drive, but under some restrictions: There must be a licensed driver in the vehicle and, in some states, teens with permits are confined to daytime driving only. In addition, a driver's permit generally expires after 60, 90 or 180 days.

Most states have some form of "graduated licensing" law, which phases in driving experience for younger drivers, allowing beginners to gain experience under lower-risk conditions first and then gradually increasing to more complex driving situations. In most states, the graduated period begins at age 15 or 16 in a few states tihs process can start as early as 14 and progresses to a full driver's license by the time the teens reach 17 years of age. 

For graduated licensing details for your state, see state-by-state provisions for teenage drivers.

With a driver's license, on the other hand, teens can drive alone. Restrictions may include the type of vehicle and whether or not the driver must wear corrective lenses.

Some states allow insurance companies to require that you list a teen with a driving permit on your insurance policy. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), these states include Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. Many insurers generally do not charge insurance premiums for teens with driver's permits, opting to wait until they are licensed drivers, but you should still list them on your policy.

Insurance companies will look for a particular date — either your teen's 16th birthday or the date his or her learner's permit expires — to begin charging you for an additional driver. If your teen does not get his or her driver's license, notify your insurer so that your next car insurance bill isn't a shocker.

You should inform your insurance company when your teen attains a license. However, if you forget and your teen is involved in a crash, it's unlikely your insurer will deny your claim — assuming your teen obtained his or her license after the effective date of your policy. Still, your insurance company can charge you back premiums for your teen from the date he or she received a driver's license. But if your teen obtained his or her license before you renewed your policy and you failed to notify your insurer, the situation is less clear. Many jurisdictions could consider this a misrepresentation of a material fact and permit the insurer to deny coverage in the event of an accident. The safest course is to notify your insurer as soon as your teen starts to drive.