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How do I get back behind the wheel?
May 21, 2011 5:16 PM   Subscribe

How do I get back on the road after a car crash?

I crashed my mother's car during my license test. Needless to say, I didn't pass. We paid for everything that needed to be paid for and now two years have passed.

Unlike last time, I am ready to become a licensed driver. However, I have a predicament.

I need a license to get car insurance, and I need car insurance to practice driving so i can get my license. My mom would let me back on her insurance provided I take some kind of driving class (which would be fine, but I haven't been able to get any information on what kind of classes she is talking about.)

Best case scenario would be to find a way to get my own car insurance as a driver without owning a car, but while the internet tells me I can do that, I haven't been able to find a company who lets you look at a quote without adding a vehicle. But I'm not sure I can even do that without a license.

So mifi, which comes first? The license or the insurance?
posted by becomingly to Travel & Transportation (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Whose car will you be learning to drive in? Also, what state are you in?
posted by brainmouse at 5:27 PM on May 21, 2011


Drivers aren't insured, cars are. If you don't have a car, there is nothing to insure.

Do you have a valid drivers permit? I would assume you need that, which will allow you to practice driving, so that you can get a license. Look up driving schools in your local yellow pages, there will be plenty of options.
posted by COD at 5:28 PM on May 21, 2011


Your mother already offered the solution. Find a driving class and get added to her insurance. Then you dont need your own car.
posted by twblalock at 6:02 PM on May 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Google "driving classes." There are many privately offered classes, and they are frequently awesome.
posted by KathrynT at 6:04 PM on May 21, 2011


License comes first. No one will sell car insurance to an unlicensed driver who doesn't have a car.

Your mom is probably referring to a driving school. They have insurance for their cars. You just pay for the lessons.

Look up your state's department of motor vehicles. There you will find all the information you need about getting a driving permit, which is what you carry when you are learning, before you get your actual license.

If you need more practice than you can get through a driving school, then you need to find someone with a car who will be willing to let you borrow their car and themselves. You cannot legally drive a car without a license, but you can drive one with only a permit, if there is a licensed driver in the car with you. The owner of the car will have insurance. They need to check if their insurance covers letting an unlicensed (but permitted) driver drive their car.

Some of this might vary by state.
posted by SuperSquirrel at 6:05 PM on May 21, 2011


Are you in Portland? If so what you do is look up Portland driving schools, take lessons with them, and practice in your mom's car, where you will be covered by her insurance. When you pass, you are licensed and you can either buy a car of your own, or not.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:32 PM on May 21, 2011


Drivers aren't insured, cars are. If you don't have a car, there is nothing to insure.

Untrue in many places, such as in the state of North Carolina. All licensed drivers are required by law to have car insurance or get their licences revoked. Which totally SUCKS if you don't have a car but I digress.

I need a license to get car insurance, and I need car insurance to practice driving so i can get my license. My mom would let me back on her insurance provided I take some kind of driving class.

Are you CERTAIN you need insurance to practice? In my state, if you have a learner's permit, you don't need insurance. You just have to buy it as soon as you pass your test.

I don't know if you live at home, but what I did was hire a driving teacher, a guy who teaches driving at public schools and moonlights as a freelancer. Then I took lessons with him in my mom's car- easy, because I was living at home. And then once I passed my test, my parents put me on their insurance.
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:52 PM on May 21, 2011


I'm not sure if they will insure an unlicensed driver, but Geico offers a non-owners auto insurance policy. It's not listed in their site; you have to call about it.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 7:15 PM on May 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have never heard of a state refusing to issue a driver's license because someone did not have insurance. Refusing to register a car, sure, that makes sense since cars are what's insured. Yes, the insurance varies based on who the primary drivers will be (see also "permissive use"), but there's a reason the car's VIN goes on your insurance card.
Drivers aren't insured, cars are. If you don't have a car, there is nothing to insure.

Untrue in many places, such as in the state of North Carolina. All licensed drivers are required by law to have car insurance or get their licences revoked. Which totally SUCKS if you don't have a car but I digress.
According to the NC DMV site:
Proof of liability insurance includes providing insurance documents that show your name, the effective date of policy, the expiration date of the policy, and the date the policy was issued.

Even if you do not own or drive a currently registered vehicle you may still apply for a license, but a restriction will be placed on your driver license. This restriction limits you to only driving "fleet vehicles." To remove this restriction you'll have to pay the Liability Insurance Restriction Removal, Fee: $10.00 .
Basically, you can have a license, but they will restrict you to driving only cars insured by another party (e.g., a company you might work for). Revoking your license is worlds different then restricting it. People who wear glasses have restricted licenses.
posted by Brian Puccio at 7:23 PM on May 21, 2011


And to answer the OP's question, either drive your mom's car or pay a professional driving school for lessons, though that will get expensive quick if you want to practice driving twice a week for the next three months.
posted by Brian Puccio at 7:24 PM on May 21, 2011


Drivers aren't insured, cars are. If you don't have a car, there is nothing to insure.

Half incorrect. Cars are insured against theft/damage, people are insured against liability.
posted by gjc at 5:17 AM on May 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


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