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Buying a Car without a License? Here What You Should Know

  • Driver's License
  • Natasha Young
  • 5 minutes

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Buying a car without a driver’s license is possible, but it entails additional steps. Most of the time, you shouldn’t have any problems unless you want to finance or register the car.  

Buying a car without a license  

Since you need a license to drive, it might not make sense to buy a car without one. But there are times when you need to buy a car without a license, and it is possible to do so. Even though there is no law that says you can’t buy a car without a license, you might run into a few problems along the way. 

Why might you want to buy a car without a license? 

In the absence of a valid driver’s license, the following are the most common reasons for purchasing a car: 

  • The fact that you are unable to drive a car legally does not mean that someone you care about has the same restrictions. You can buy a licensed driver a car as a gift. Keep in mind to include their first and last names in your title. 
  • A vehicle for your company can be purchased without a license if you need a fleet of vehicles or simply a vehicle that your employees will use for work-related purposes. 
  • People with disabilities who need a caregiver may want to buy a car for their caregiver to use. 
  • You can still buy a car for your teen even if you don’t have your own license, as long as they have one. In most cases, teens cannot legally finance a car, but if your teen has a license, you can. 
  • Automobile collectors buy cars to add to their collections rather than for personal use, and this is an option that doesn’t necessitate the acquisition of a driver’s license. 
  • If you have a private driver or chauffeur, you can purchase a vehicle for them to drive if they have a valid license to do so. 

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How to buy a car without a license 

Confirm who will drive the car 

 If you don’t have a driver’s license, you can’t drive or test drive a car, and you can’t legally take it out of the parking lot. Decide ahead of time who will drive the car. 

Apply for a car loan 

If you’re going to get a loan to pay for the car, make sure to compare your options with as many lenders as you can to find a good deal. Many lenders will let you get preapproved and see your personal interest rates with just a soft credit check that won’t hurt your credit. Keep in mind that to get an auto loan, you usually need good credit (or a co-signer with good credit), a verifiable income, and a low debt-to-income (DTI) ratio. 

Get yourself a solid insurance 

Before you can buy a car from a dealer, you’ll need to show proof that you’re covered by car insurance. This is also needed to get the car registered. Remember that you’ll need to give the insurance agent the driver’s license information of the person who will be driving the car. To keep your costs as low as possible, choose someone with a good driving record. 

Finish the purchase 

Once you have a way to pay for the car and insurance, you’re ready to buy it. If you’re buying a car from a dealer, it’s best to let them know that you don’t have a license so they can be ready. Also, don’t forget to bring a friend or family member with a license with you to drive the car off the lot. 

Get the car registered 

If you buy the car from a dealer, they will send the DMV forms for registration and title. But if you buy from an individual, you’ll need to go to your local DMV to fill out the necessary paperwork. Don’t forget to bring a picture ID and proof of insurance. 

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Challenges of buying a car without a license 


Each state and the District of Columbia have rules about how to register a car. If you buy a car from a dealer, they will send the title and registration papers to your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). In the meantime, they will give you temporary registration. 

Most states require you to show proof of insurance and a photo ID, but not always a driver’s license, in order to register your car. If you want to drive your new car, you’ll need a license or a permit to learn how to drive. Keep in mind that each state has different rules, so check with your state’s DMV. 


All states require cars that are registered to be insured, whether you do it yourself or have a dealer do it for you. If you don’t have a license, it might be hard and expensive to get auto insurance since insurers might see you as more of a risk without one. 

In this case, it might be a good idea to work with an independent agent who can help you compare quotes from different car insurance companies that work with owners who don’t have licenses. 

Most of the big insurance companies offer what is called a “non-owner policy,” which is the type of policy you need. Note that you’ll usually have to give information about the driver’s license of the person who will be driving the car you want to insure. 


If you want to buy a car with a car loan, you’ll need to show a photo ID from the government. This doesn’t have to be a driver’s license, though. 

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