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How does car insurance cover additional drivers?

Most people driving your car are covered, but some policies differ on unlisted drivers.

Your car insurance company should cover other drivers, but you may need to list them on your policy to receive protection. While some companies cover friends or family even if they’re not named, not every company allows this benefit.

Read on to find out what you need to know about adding extra drivers to your insurance.

What is a named driver?

A named driver, also known as an additional driver, is a person who’s insured to drive a car – assuming it’s another person who does most of the driving. The named driver usually has the same amount of coverage as the car’s main driver.

If you already have car insurance and you’d like to add a driver, you’ll have to get in touch with your policy issuer to give them details of the new driver.

So, does car insurance cover additional drivers?

Yes, but coverage varies between car insurance providers and whether the driver is named on your policy. You might find one company that covers a friend driving your car every once in a while. But another provider might only protect named drivers on your policy, especially if they live with you and there’s a reasonable chance they might borrow your car.

Do I need to list everyone that drives my car?

Most of the time, you should list all drivers who regularly use the car to avoid being turned down for a claim. You may pay a higher premium to offset the risk of another driver. Drivers listed may include:

  • Roommates
  • Family members living in your house
  • Additional owners on the car’s title
  • Friends who drive your car regularly – this varies by insurance provider

Does my car insurance cover unlisted drivers?

In many cases, yes. Most policies include a statement or clause that protects unnamed drivers if you give them permission to drive. In this case, a friend or family member who doesn’t live with you could get coverage to protect them in the event of an accident.

If your policy doesn’t include this statement, you could be held responsible for accidents as the car’s owner. If you’re not sure about adding a driver, you can find out whether to name them on your policy from your car insurance company.

When in doubt, avoid unwanted costs or denied claims by refusing to let an unnamed driver get behind the wheel.

How does car insurance work if an unlisted driver gets in an accident?

If an unnamed driver gets in an accident with your permission to drive, your car insurance will likely act as the primary coverage and the driver’s as secondary insurance.

Keep in mind that some insurance companies don’t cover drivers not named on your policy. In this case, the driver’s insurance might pay or you might get left with damage expenses out of pocket. If your car was stolen, your insurance company should cover the damage under comprehensive coverage if you bought that protection.

How do I add an additional driver to my car insurance?

To add another driver when buying a new policy, you can enter that driver’s information in the driver section of the application. Your premium will reflect the risk of that driver and any others on the policy.

If you have car insurance, you can follow a few steps to add another driver to your policy:

  1. Phone customer service about adding the new driver.
  2. Tell customer service the driver’s name, driver’s license number and driving history.
  3. A representative should add the driver to your policy and confirm any changes in your premium.

Or you can add the additional driver online:

  1. Log in to your customer account and choose to edit policy details.
  2. Enter the driver’s information and save the changes.
  3. Accept your updated premium and finalize the change.

Bottom line

Most of the time, you can cover other drivers by giving them permission to use your car or by adding them to your policy. However, it’s really important to check your policy so that you understand exactly what is and what isn’t covered. In the worst-case scenario, you could be responsible for damage after an accident happens. Also, adding another driver could change your premium.

Frequently asked questions about named drivers

Do I have to add a roommate to my car insurance?

Not necessarily, if your roommate won’t be driving your car. However, some companies or states require you to tell your insurance company about any licensed drivers living with you. If you don’t exclude the roommate from your policy in this case, you may pay a higher premium. Consider adding your roommate if they’ll be driving your car at all.

When is the additional driver’s coverage effective?

Once you’ve added the driver to your policy, you should see the driver listed on your policy declaration page either online or through a mailed or emailed copy. Once you’ve confirmed the driver’s name is listed, that person can receive coverage while driving your car.

Will adding another driver increase my premium?

It might but not always. If the driver is younger or has experienced an accident or traffic violation recently, your premium probably will go up. But a safe driver with a long claims-free history could lower your cost or keep it the same.

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Compare car insurance

Name Product Accidental Damage Roadside Assistance New Car Replacement Choice of Repairer Guarantee on Repairs
Direct Asia Comprehensive Cover Car Insurance
Direct Asia Comprehensive Cover Car Insurance
Yes
Optional
Yes
Optional
Lifetime repair guarantee
Receive S$100 worth of Shell fuel (or 3,000 Shell Escape points) plus free 24 Hour Breakdown Assistance when you insure your car. T&Cs apply. Ends 31 July 2022.
Budget Direct Insurance Comprehensive Car Insurance
Budget Direct Insurance Comprehensive Car  Insurance
Yes
Optional
Yes
Optional
12-months repair guarantee at authorised workshops.
Receive up S$100 NETS FlashPay card when you purchase a new 12-month comprehensive car insurance policy online. Use promo code 'HAPPY5'. T&Cs apply. Ends 31 Oct 2021.
Get an additional 5% off by using Affinity ID 'FDRSAVE'.
FWD Comprehensive Cover Car Insurance
FWD Comprehensive Cover Car Insurance
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Get 20% discount when you purchase a comprehensive plan using the promo code: FINCAR20. Ends 24 October 2021. T&Cs apply.
98.9% of Car insurance claims approved. Lifetime 50% NCD Guarantee.
Income Drivo Premium Car Insurance
Income Drivo Premium Car Insurance
Yes
Optional
No
Yes
N/A
Get unlimited third party liability and unlimited windscreen cover. Plus, choose your preferred workshop for repairs or maintenance.
Direct Asia Third Party Fire and Theft Cover Car Insurance
Direct Asia Third Party Fire and Theft Cover Car Insurance
Yes
Optional
Yes
Optional
Lifetime repair guarantee
Receive S$50 worth of Shell fuel (1,500 Shell Escape Points) when you insure your car. T&Cs apply. Ends 31 July 2022.
Budget Direct Insurance Third Party Fire and Theft Car Insurance
Budget Direct Insurance Third Party Fire and Theft Car Insurance
Third party fire and theft only
Optional
No
Optional
12-months repair guarantee at authorised workshops.
Loss or damages to your car by fire or theft - up to your car's market value. Plus, unlimited cover for injury or death to others.
Budget Direct Insurance Third Party Only Car Insurance
Budget Direct Insurance Third Party Only Car Insurance
Yes
Optional
No
No
12-months repair guarantee at authorised workshops.
Receive $20 in shopping vouchers when you refer a friend. Your friends will each get 5% off any policy they purchase. T&Cs apply.
Get an additional 5% off by using Affinity ID 'FDRSAVE'.
Direct Asia Third Party Only Car Insurance
Direct Asia Third Party Only Car Insurance
Yes
No
Optional
Optional
Lifetime repair guarantee
Receive S$50 worth of Shell fuel (1,500 Shell Escape Points) when you insure your car. T&Cs apply. Ends 31 July 2022.
Income Drivo Classic Car Insurance
Income Drivo Classic Car Insurance
Yes
Optional
No
No
N/A
Unlimited third party liability, up to S$5 million in damages to third party property, up to S$1,000 in medical expenses.
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